"My brother is too kind. He was eminent when my eminence was only imminent." -Niles Crane
Question #67331 posted on 04/21/2012 6:20 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I am in 3 Nephi in my personal study right now. The other day I read 3 Nephi 20:16 and 21:12. It reminded me of some thoughts/questions that I had on my mission days in the hot, dusty streets of our neighboring country to the south.

Is there an interpretation, explanation, or application of this prophecy?

(doctrinal based or personal opinion based is equally satisfying to my near insatiable curiosity)

-Milton's Areopagitica

A:

Dear ex-Texan missionary,

For anyone who doesn't have a triple handy, here are those verses:

3 Nephi 20:16 - Then shall ye, who are a remnant of the house of Jacob, go forth among them; and ye shall be in the midst of them who shall be many; and ye shall be among them as a lion among the beasts of the forest, and as a young lion among the flocks of sheep, who, if he goeth through both treadeth down and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver.

3 Nephi 21:12 - And my people who are a remnant of Jacob shall be among the Gentiles, yea, in the midst of them as a lion among the beasts of the forest, as a young lion among the flocks of sheep, who, if he go through both treadeth down and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver.

Here's a couple of other scriptures that I think are relevant: 

D&C 87:5 - And it shall come to pass also that the remnants who are left of the land will marshal themselves, and shall become exceedingly angry, and shall vex the Gentiles with a sore vexation.

2 Nephi 30:2 - For behold, I say unto you that as many of the Gentiles as will repent are the covenant people of the Lord; and as many of the Jews as will not repent shall be cast off; for the Lord covenanteth with none save it be with them that repent and believe in his Son, who is the Holy One of Israel.

So, these scriptures are talking about a "remnant of Jacob" or "remnants who are left of the land," apparently descendants of the Nephites. They are, in some way, eventually going to be irresistibly dominant over the Gentiles. This remnant is the covenant people of the Lord, and as many of the Gentiles as will repent also will be.

Here's my way of putting all of that together. All who repent will be counted with the remnant of Jacob. If you're a member of the Church in good standing, you're an heir to all the blessings promised to the descendants of the Nephites. Remnant of Jacob = descendants of Nephites = repentant Gentiles = the Church = (hopefully) us. So these prophecies apply to us as members of the Church. They basically tell us that the Church/the righteous will be completely triumphant in the end; when the second coming and millennium come around, all those who oppose Christ and his followers will be as powerless as sheep before lions. Adding some bracketed text to the verse might make it easier to understand: 

3 Nephi 21:12 - And my people who are a remnant of Jacob [us, as members of the Church] shall be among the Gentiles [the wicked], yea, in the midst of them as a lion among the beasts of the forest [we'll live among them, but on a higher level], as a young lion among the flocks of sheep [we'll have more power than them], who, if he go through both treadeth down and teareth in pieces, and none can deliver [and our eventual triumph is assured].

In summary, these verses are symbolically describing the eventual triumph and dominance of Christ's people, Israel. That's not exactly a novel or crazy doctrinal idea, but we shouldn't hold its plausibility against it; I think it's the most general, intuitive and important meaning of those verses. 

~Professor Kirke

Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What were the most-quoted scriptures (five or so, or however many outliers there are) in the April 2012 General Conference? What was the most-quoted talk, and who was the most-quoted non-LDS source?

-yayfulness the lazy

A:

Dear Lazefulness,

Did you know that out of the standard works, the New Testament was the most-referenced, beating the Book of Mormon by eight references? Matthew was by far the most-referenced book, with thirty-three references.

conf_scripture_chart.png

The vast majority of scriptures used this April Conference were only used once; this makes it a little hard to find a top five, since three were referenced three times and sixteen were referenced twice. The three referenced thrice are: Moses 1:39 (the Plan of Salvation), 2 Nephi 2:11 (opposition in all things), and John 13:35 (love one another).

The scriptures referenced twice were: 1 Nephi 3:5 (murmuring), 1 Nephi 8:12 (fruit of the tree of life),  1 Nephi 17:45 (swift to do iniquity, slow to remember the Lord), 2 Nephi 25:23 (saved by grace, after all we can do), Mosiah 5:2 (no more disposition to do evil), Mosiah 15:18 (O how beautiful upon the mountains), Alma 5:13 (a mighty change of heart), Matthew 5:7 (blessed are the merciful), Matthew 11:28 (come unto me), John 3:16 (He sent his Son), John 14:18 (the Comforter), James 1:22 (be doers of the word), Acts 17:29 (we are offspring of God), Hebrews 12:9 (obedience to the Father), Psalm 127:3 (children are an heritage of the Lord).

No Conference talk was referenced multiple times in this session of Conference; twenty-five total were referenced, eleven of which were past talks from President Monson. 

You didn't ask this, but there were ten references to hymns and primary songs; two of the references were for "We are all Enlisted."

The most-quoted source outside of the standard works were the Teachings of Presidents of the Church manuals. First place is a tie between Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith and Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Harold B. Lee, which were each cited five times. Aside from Teachings, Julie B. Beck refers to Daughters in My Kingdom no less than 20 times, and material from the Worldwide Leadership Training Meeting 2012 is quoted twice in other talks.

As for non-LDS sources, none were quoted more than once. There were three main categories: poetry, books, and news stories/speeches/studies. Of course, the poetry references all come from President Monson, as do most of the books. Here is the breakdown of non-LDS sources:

Poetry: John Greenleaf Whittier, “Maud Muller,” Henry Wadsworth Longfellow, “The Legend Beautiful,” William Wordsworth, Ode: Intimations of Immortality from Recollections of Early Childhood.

Books: Robert Blatchford, More Things in Heaven and Earth: Adventures in Quest of a Soul, Mark Twain, Roughing It, Hampton Sides, Ghost Soldiers: The Forgotten Epic Story of World War II’s Most Dramatic Mission, Thomas Edison, in Elbert Hubbard, Little Journeys to the Homes of Good Men and Great, Book 2, Rabindranath Tagore, in William Jay Jacobs, Mother Teresa: Helping the Poor, Robert Louis Stevenson, in Elbert Hubbard II, comp., The Note Book of Elbert Hubbard: Mottoes, Epigrams, Short Essays, Passages, Orphic Sayings and Preachments.

News stories, speeches, and studies: "What the Mormons Know About Welfare," "Called to Serve: the Prosocial Behavior of Active Latter-day Saints," "Has Europe Lost its Soul?," "For Women Under 30, Most Births Occur Outside Marriage," "No Money, No Honey, No Church."

And, as a bonus, this is by far my favorite footnote from a talk:

"Mark Twain, Roughing It (1891), 127–28. Each new generation is presented with Twain’s comments as if they were a significant new discovery. There is usually little reference to the fact that Mark Twain was equally dismissive of Christianity and religion in general." –Elder Quentin L. Cook, "In Tune with the Music of Faith."

If the interested reader wants the lists of scriptures, talks, and hymns referenced this Conference for personal study, email me and I'll give out the lists I compiled to answer this.

–Concealocanth

Question #67330 posted on 04/21/2012 5:08 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm sure there are some similar questions in the archives, but I couldn't find any that address my specific question, and my internet searching isn't working either. I have really, really, really oily skin. It seems like if I don't apply powder or dab my face with a kleenex or paper towel every ten minutes, it gets super shiny and doesn't exactly improve my self-image. My makeup also rubs off super easily on anything my face happens to come in contact with. I'm very insecure about it. Most websites I've found say the best thing to do is to go without makeup or at least concealer... but that's not really an option for me. I had really bad acne when I was younger (I still have it, but now it's fairly minor), and my face is covered in scars and is very unevenly colored all over. A spot-treater wouldn't be enough. I'd rather have oily skin than have people see what my skin really looks like, but neither is an ideal option. Do you have any advice of what I should change?

Here's my typical regimen: I wash my face at least twice a day (usually either Clean-N-Clear Morning Burst or a blackhead-clearing scrub in the morning, and Clearasil in the evening). After washing in the morning, I coat my entire face in liquid foundation (Cover Girl, Oil-Free) and then a concealer stick. I use Wet-N-Wild brand concealer because they're cheap-- like $2 each at WalMart. Like I said, that's probably the main problem-- but I don't feel like I can go without it. I then use a slightly lighter concealer stick along my jawline to try to blend the colors between my face and my neck (although it doesn't work very well... but I guess that's another question). Then I cover my face in loose powder with a brush.

I can't afford expensive or department store makeup or professional advice. I just need a way to prevent the oil from seeping through my makeup and having it rub off everywhere. Any suggestions, even minor ones? Thanks.

-It's definitely not a healthy glow

A:

Dear It's Definitely Not a Healthy Glow,

So, you already know I'm not an expert/professional, so take my advice simply for what it is: advice.

It sounds to me like you're bombarding your face with way too much stuff. Your skin might be so oily because your body is trying to overcompensate for having its natural oils stripped away so frequently and rather roughly. Obviously your current routine isn't working out so something needs to change. Remember that no matter what changes you implement your body will need time to adjust and results may not be immediate.

I recently started doing the oil cleansing method. Yes, I know, it sounds a little crazy to clean your face with oil, but oil dissolves oil. I've been using castor oil and extra-virgin olive oil, about a 50/50 blend and it's been great for me. The site I linked has plenty of information, suggestions, reviews, etc. if you're interested.

You may want to consider switching to a more gentle cleanser, too, for when you vary your routine up a bit. I personally have found most of your typical facial cleansers to dry out my skin too much. I'm a fan of Burt's Bees facial cleansing products. They're natural, gentle and they just work for me. They're a little more on the pricier side but you really don't need to use very much of the product at once (and not even every day for that matter) so it should last a little while. Using a light moisturizer is a good idea, too, especially one with SPF.

Experiment around a little bit and find out what works best for you. Try to avoid products with ingredients that tend to dry out your skin (see Board Question #15104).

I don't have much to say about makeup except slow down. I can't imagine that wearing that much makeup every day is beneficial to your skin. Try experimenting with less makeup to see if you can achieve similar results. You could try using a little bit of liquid concealer first in trouble spots and then brush on a light powder, or perhaps even a bronzer would be better if you have fairly pale skin already. Really though, I would recommend you try gradually reducing the amount of makeup you use and it would probably help solve several of your problems.

Don't forget to let your face breathe once in a while and drink plenty of water, too. And try not to obsess too much over your face. It's really just not worth the anxiety and worry.

-Sky Bones

posted on 04/22/2012 7:03 p.m.
I can really relate to the original poster. I also have very oily skin and am very self-conscious of it and also the scars of acne (both inside and out). I would recommend she try mineral makeup. It has wonderful coverage, but is not so heavy as the makeup she is currently using: Wet-and-wild concealer stick (I used it, terrible stuff!) and the liquid foundation (CG oil-free ... used that too).

Mineral makeup is much better for your skin and allows it to breath. I really like Everyday Minerals. It may be a bit more expensive than drug store makeup, but trust me when I say it's so much better for your skin, it DOES help control the oil, AND it lasts longer because you don't use as much.

However, if the OP decides to continue with the products she uses, the concealer should really be applied BEFORE the liquid foundation. Concealer, then foundation, then powder to set it all. I would guess the concealer is adding to the feel of oiliness just by being on top of the foundation. That Wet and Wild stuff is very heavy makeup. It's very greasy by itself. If anything, she should stop using that right away!

I would also encourage her to try different products. It took me many years and a lot of experimenting to finally find the right balance of products that do what I want them to do. If the products she's currently using aren't working, stop buying the same thing. Try other brands! Not everyone is the same, but I guarantee there is something out there that will work.

If all else fails, and it's still a problem, I would encourage her to see a dermatologist. This is not something you just have to put up with. There are options! Even if you don't know what they are, that doesn't mean you don't have any. Hang in there, and hold your head high!!

--Been there. Done that. Still struggling.
Question #67329 posted on 04/21/2012 4:50 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Where are some great places to go canoeing here in Utah County or somewhere close?

-Nigel

A:

Dear Nigel,

You can rent a canoe at the CLAS Ropes Course on Center Street, and then canoe on the river and onto Utah Lake. I don't know of any other places to canoe in Utah County besides the Provo River and Utah Lake. 

- Eliot (who notes that your question is much different if you actually meant kayaking)

Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

There's a prophecy about two prophets being dead in the streets of Jerusalem for 3.5 days and then being raised from the dead before the second coming of Christ.

Is there any valid sources that say these will be LDS prophets, from the quorum of the twelve or first presidency?

I think most are of the opinion that this is a prophecy that is still pending. Could this prophecy have already been fulfilled, perhaps in the 1900s when news and publicity media wasn't as big as it is now?

I think I heard somewhere that their names would be akin to David, where did that idea come from?

-Levi

A:

Dear Levi,

For this kind of question, scriptures.byu.edu is the definitive source. It has a database of every scripture referenced in every conference talk back to 1942, the entire Journal of Discourses, and the Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith. I went through it to find out what has actually been authoritatively said on the matter; I looked at every time any verse from Revelation 11:1-14 (the main source for the stated prophecy) has been referenced. This search found virtually nothing. The most specific and relevant thing was a quote by Orson Pratt* from the Journal of Discourses vol. 18 pg. 65, but even that didn't have enough new content to be worth reproducing here.*

So far as I can tell, it is nowhere explicitly, authoritatively stated the two witnesses will be LDS. However, Revelation 11:6 says: "These have power to shut heaven, that it rain not in the days of their prophecy..." That sounds like as classic a case of using divine authority, the Priesthood, as anything could be. The only people who have the Priesthood would be members of the Church, so that argues strongly that they will be members of the Twelve or First Presidency. 

I think the prophecy really must still be pending. Read the context, from Revelation 11:11-15.

And after three days and an half the Spirit of life from God entered into them, and they stood upon their feet; and great fear fell upon them which saw them. And they heard a great voice from heaven saying unto them, Come up hither. And they ascended up to heaven in a cloud; and their enemies beheld them. And the same hour was there a great earthquake, and the tenth part of the city fell, and in the earthquake were slain of men seven thousand: and the remnant were affrighted, and gave glory to the God of heaven. [...] And the seventh angel sounded; and there were great voices in heaven, saying, The kingdoms of this world are become the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever.

I think we can all agree not all of that has happened, and it has to all happen in pretty quick succession, so it looks like none of it could have happened.

When you mentioned David in this connection the idea didn't seem totally strange to me, but on further investigation I think I'm getting reality confused with some faith promoting legends about obscure Jewish prophecies. The name David has all kinds of associations with messianic prophecies, royal blood, political power, etc., so in any discussion of prophecy that's long enough it will tend to come up, but I haven't been able to uncover any specific association of it with the naming of the witnesses.

~Professor Kirke

*In the present day Church's theological spectrum, bookended by B. H. Roberts and Bruce R. McConkie, Orson Pratt is on another shelf entirely; he is not a conservative doctrinal source. And even still he doesn't have any intense theories about this. I'm kind of disappointed. 

posted on 04/22/2012 7:04 p.m.
If you look at the New Testament Institute Manual, it references D&C 77:15, which is an actual "question-answer" section on Revelations. The answer on who these two prophets would be was the following:

"They are two prophets that are to be raised up to the Jewish nation in the last days, at the time of the restoration, and to prophesy to the Jews after they are gathered and have built the city of Jerusalem in the Land of their fathers" (D&C 77:15)

The Doctrine and Covenants Institute Manual has some relevant information to answer your question (speaking of {D&C 77:15):

Elder Bruce R. McConkie identified the two prophets as “followers of that humble man Joseph Smith, through whom the Lord of Heaven restored the fulness of his everlasting gospel in this final dispensation of grace. No doubt they will be members of the Council of the Twelve or of the First Presidency of the Church.” ( Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, 3:509.)

The two witnesses are raised up “to the Jewish nation” and are not necessarily from the Jewish nation (see D&C 77:15–16 ; italics added.)

Hope that helps.

-Pregunton
Question #67326 posted on 04/21/2012 4:26 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Taking classes spring for the first time in a while. Question: How do I figure out the best way I learn? As in how do I decide how to study for a class? Writing notes in class? Recording lectures? Flashcards? Reading things over and over? Explaining to others? How to figure that out without ruining my gpa?

-There are many learning styles

A:

Dear yes there are,

There are classes for this! The Career and Academic Success Center have Student Development (STDEV) classes that you can register for. If you aren't really interested in taking an actual class, the CASC also has a Learning Strategies page which goes over all of the items that you mentioned.  My suggestion is for you to take a look at these items and decide which strategies you think will help you the best. Then implement them and see how well they work for you. You can oftentimes "test" these strategies out by using them at work or church. 

Good luck!

-Watts

Question #67325 posted on 04/21/2012 4:26 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

My Googling skills are so subpar. What is the song playing on the Parks and Rec episode where Ron Swanson is drunk dancing in the Snakehole Lounge? For reference, see this site (http://drunkronswanson.com/). I dare you to keep it on all day.

-El mero güero

A:

Dear Elmer,

Oh Elmer, you beautiful tropical fish. I will find an answer for you. The song is "Who Dat Girl" by Flo Rida. If you have a smartphone or newer iPod I recommend downloading Soundhound or Shazam. They are handy apps that can tell you the name of a song or the artist who is singing it if you don't know that info. I've got Soundhound and love it. Check it out.

-Art Vandelay

Question #67323 posted on 04/21/2012 4:20 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How does the valve at the bottom of the stomach leading to the intestines let food matter get through while keeping all the caustic acid in? Please answer with visual figures, drawings preferred over photos.

-understands pictures, not words

A:

Dear understands,

In the stomach, swallowed food gets completely mixed with the stomach acid. The resulting sludgy mixture, food and acid alike, gets pushed into the small intestine. There, the food is digested and absorbed, and the stomach acid is neutralized by pancreatic secretions. Even if the stomach acid and food stayed separate in the stomach, that particular valve doesn't really have any way to let through one but not the other.

I guess if you really need a picture...hopefully my homemade artwork will be enlightening?

digestion.jpg

- Eirene

Question #67320 posted on 04/21/2012 4:20 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

There's a hundred and four days of summer vacation, and school comes along just to end it. So the annual problem for our generation is finding a good way to spend it... like maybe... what?

What-cha' doin?

-Isabella

A:

Dear Isabella,

Apparently I missed this question when it came around, but I'll take this opportunity, instead. I found a sweet on-campus job and I'll be taking drum set and springboard diving lessons completely free from extraordinarily talented and generous friends. To relax, I think I'll watch Sherlock and Fullmetal Alchemist again, reread Lord of the Rings, learn a few more songs on the guitar/ukulele, and, of course, answer lots of Board questions. Maybe, if I get really lucky, a weekend trip to Disneyland might be in order. Should be a blast!

-The Entropy Ninja

Question #67311 posted on 04/21/2012 4:20 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

So I'm moving into the Provo YSA 9th ward next fall, and I'm nervous. I've been in a few wards that are very clique-y and anti-social... I DON'T want that. I need to have lots of friends, and be in a ward where I'm comfortable talking to or hanging out with whoever. Do you or anyone you know happen to know if this ward tends to be more social, or more not social??

- :)

A:

Dear Juliet,

Wards change every semester. Unfortunately, we can't predict the future. If we could, we would've answered all of your questions before you ever asked them.

-Azriel

posted on 04/22/2012 7:04 p.m.
For the record, I have lived in that ward for two years, and I'm planning on coming back for a third. I've found it to be very social and very welcoming. While I can't predict the future either, I can say that despite a lot of turnoff, the overall social vibe of the ward didn't change a lot between the two years. Because all the ward apartments are so close together, it makes it easy to just go hang out together whenever, and there is usually some kind of movie night/sports activity/game night going on at least once or twice a week.
~Long timer
Question #67309 posted on 04/21/2012 4:20 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I would love to give my opinion to all the little "question askers" on here. How do I become part of the board? Do you have to be a certain year? Or are you just a tight group of people?

-I Want To Be You

A:

Dear I wanna walk like you, talk like you,

Under the current rules, you have to assassinate a current writer and take their spot.

–Concealocanth

A:

Dear Trev Likely,

We are tight like unto a dish, yo. To join our club, you gotta check the archives.

-Azriel

Question #67307 posted on 04/21/2012 4:20 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm looking to take STAC 150 - Ice skating, for the Fall. However, that class ends at 1:40 and another class that i really want to take begins at 3:00. Do you think the 20 minutes is enough time between classes(considering that the ice skating is off-campus)? Or is it wiser to drop one of the classes?
Thanks a ton.

-Future Skater.

A:

Dear Future Skater,

There is an hour and twenty minutes between 1:40 and 3:00, not twenty minutes. Assuming you really did mean twenty minutes, and if you're walking, I'd say drop one of them—it's roughly 30 minutes from Peaks Arena to campus on foot. If you're driving or biking you should be able to make it to class on time, but try it out for a week or so and see if it's feasible for you. This is why there's an add/drop deadline.

-Genuine Article

Question #67305 posted on 04/21/2012 4:14 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I did check the archives, and while there are many questions about jello, this particular one has not yet been answered.

For some reason, when my husband makes jello, there's a denser, thin layer of jello on the bottom of the pan. Its a slightly different consistency than the rest of the jello- and reminds me more of the gel we used in science labs in high school (I think they had something to do with chromosomes?) than it does of the jello I know and love. I think its gross, and I hesitate to ask him to make jello because of it. This layer doesn't occur when I make jello, but I know its not just him- I've witnessed this phenomenon at my mother's and several siblings' houses. Have you ever seen this happen, and do you have any idea what causes this?

-mj

A:

Dear mj,

He's simply not stirring it for long enough. Most people think they're good to go as soon as they add the water, but it takes a few minutes for the powder to properly dissolve. The dense layer you're finding on the bottom is from the undissolved powder settling, producing something halfway between regular Jello and Jello jigglers.

-Genuine Article

Question #67303 posted on 04/21/2012 4:08 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I heard a rumor that the bedrooms and kitchens in New Heritage buildings 25 and 28 are bigger than the bedrooms and kitchens in buildings 26 and 27. Is this true?

-is my hotel suite smaller than their hotel suite?!?!?

A:

Dear nickels and dimes,

Does it really matter? 

Since we are supposed to actually answer questions and not just be sarcastic, I looked into your rumor to determine if there was any truth to the situation.  After inspecting the floor plans for building 25 and building 26, you can see that the floor plans are identical. Nothing indicates that there are larger bedrooms or kitchens between the two New Heritage Buildings. 

Happy house hunting. You'll never live in apartments this nice again. 

-Watts

Question #67295 posted on 04/21/2012 4:02 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board Love Gurus,

Alright, I'm a teenage girl with a problem. Ok, here is the story:

My boyfriend broke up with me about a month ago. Lets just say he didn't do it in a very nice way. About two days after the "incident", a guy in my stake I've known for about 2 years started talking to me. I guess because I was in such a rough time, I wanted to feel like a guy had feelings for me again and that I wasn't a cast off, so we started "talking". Well, he lives about an hour away and I thought it wouldn't amount to much, just harmless flirting, right? *sigh* wrong. Turns out this guy is in the deep end for me, if you know what I mean. He's talking about how he wants to take me on a date and possibly be my boyfriend if I don't reject him. The thing is though, I'm not really ready for the whole dating thing again, ecspecially if he wants to go to a whole committed "boyfriend/girlfriend" thing. A general authority said once that every girl owes a boy a first date, but not a second one. But if I let him take me on a date, he might get the wrong impression and it'll be harder to end things. Anyways, I have to see him on Friday for a stake dance and...I don't know what to do. Not only will he be there, but my ex as well. It's going to be a rough night, all in its self, but how do I end things the nicest way possible to a sweet guy that I really don't have that strong of feelings for? Do I accept the first date? What do I do when I see him Friday?? Oh, please help me!

-between a rock and a hard place

A:

Dear betwixt,

Alas as it is Friday as I am typing this, I doubt that this message will get to you in time for your dance this evening. However, I can try and give you some advice on the other things. Let's break your question(s) down a bit. 

"A General Authority once said..."

It's been said before, so I won't try and run this point into the ground, but not everything that comes out of a General Authority's mouth is straight doctrine. GAs have opinions too and this is important to keep in mind. I'm not saying disregard what has been said, but just keep that in mind. You are not breaking a commandment or going to get in trouble for turning a guy down. That said, I don't think you have a good enough reason to turn the guy down. (As a side note: I can't ever remember a General Authority actually saying this.) 

Which brings us to...

Watts' (probably) incomplete list of reasons to turn down a guy when he asks you out:

  • You feel uncomfortable. I interpret this to mean that he unnerves me, "creeps me out", etc. This is the guy that (regardless of whether or not he actually would) gives you the "I'm going to rape you vibe." YOU DO NOT HAVE TO GO OUT WITH THIS GUY (in case that wasn't obvious already). 
  • He is asking you on a second date and you did not have a good time the first time. If you want to gouge your eyes out for fun because a date is so bad, you don't have to go out with a guy a second time.
  • If you already have plans for that night/time (THIS SHOULD NOT JUST BE USED AS A LAME EXCUSE - See below).
  • If you absolutely hate the guy. Refrain from being rude, but you can turn him down. No point in going on a date where you may end up killing your date and feeding him to your pet piranha(s). 
  • You are already in a "committed relationship." Whatever that means. I suppose that marriage and engaged are pretty safely "committed relationships" but you oddly have a whole lot of grey area prior to these points. 
  • He asks you out for the same day (i.e. later that night). Unacceptable in my opinion. If he really wants to ask you out he should have planned better. It's just proper etiquette. In my opinion, even if you are available, don't go (this is especially important to enforce when you really, really like the guy. MAKE HIM WORK FOR IT!). This rule does not apply to "hang outs" which, coincidentally are also not "dates" (so stop counting them as dates, BYU population). 
There are your valid reasons for turning a guy down. However, there are also reasons why you should not turn a guy down. 

Watts' also (probably) incomplete list of reasons you should not turn down a guy:

  • You are worried about leading him on. A first date is NON COMMITTAL. It's a test to see if you are compatible. Just because you go on a first date, doesn't mean you need to start saving the date. In fact a first date really means nothing at all. So, if you are worried about leading him on, don't go on a second date. If he really is that in to you, he'll respect that, back off, but will get to hold onto the fact that he had one date with you. (P.S. Flirting is also non committal.)
  • If he has poor hygiene. This might be a sympathy/pity date for you, but if he had the cojones to ask you out, you really should just go on a date with him. 
  • You'd rather do something else (YRDSE). This is different then having set plans (see above). Ex: Set plans would constitute a specific activity and specific group of people, such as going to a midnight movie. YRDSE can usually be determined by your level of commitment. I use the Netflix scale. The Netflix scale is a scale, from 1 to 10, which determines how likely I am to bail on the event and watch Arrested Development (or another show) re-runs on Netflix instead. A 1 would mean that I am only likely to bail if I get sick and am confined to my bed. A 5 is usually a "I'll go for a bit and if it's fun I'll stay, and if not I am totally going back home to find out if Robin and Ted are ever going to get back together" type scenario. And a 10 would be this type of situation. High Netflix scale scores indicate a YRDSE activity rather than a "set plans" activity. 
  • You just don't want to. For the same reason as the bad B.O. reason, there is a guy who had enough courage to ask you out and you should respect that. Heaven knows that when I have asked guys out on dates, I would have died if they had said no without a valid reason. Lame excuses are often used in this situation, but totally not cool. Stop it. 

Now that we have those answers for you, let's give you some advice about this stake dance situation. As I said earlier this probably won't get to you in time, but in case it does, here goes. 

Don't go to the stake dance. I mean it. It is entirely appropriate to avoid your ex, and more importantly if it's going to be rough why on earth would you subject yourself to that? I'm not saying you avoid the situation entirely, however you definitely don't need to subject yourself to a terrible situation. 

Last but not least, there are many years of dating and relationship ups and downs ahead of you. This is something you should know, be aware of, and embrace. Many have come before and many will come after. Guess what? Somehow most of us find someone we want to spend the rest of our life with. Guess what else? Relationship ups and downs don't stop once you get married. 

Face the problem, accept the fact that it may not be easy to go on a date with this guy and it may be even harder to tell him you don't want to be his girlfriend. But know that this isn't really something you can avoid forever. The longer you wait to control the situation, the longer the situation is controlling you. A situation that your ex put you in. Don't let him continue to have that control over you. He sounds like a piece of work and as a daughter of God you deserve more. So demand more; take control. Who knows, maybe this guy will surprise you. Maybe he won't, but that's not really the point is it?

-Watts

A:

Dear between,

I just wanted to say that Watts' list of what makes a "good" reason not to accept a date is probably personal to her. You don't need to follow the same rules she does. In fact, I thought that everything in her "bad reasons" list would be a perfectly fine reason to turn down a date. My personal opinion is that if you're not enthusiastic about a date for any reason, it's completely fine to save both of you time, money, effort, and feelings by just saying, "No, thank you." It's actually pretty easy to turn someone down if you commit yourself to saying only those three words: no made-up excuses, no beating around the bush, just a polite "no, thank you," and it'll be over before you know it. I suppose if you really want to let him down easy, you can even say, "No, thank you. I think we live too far away, and I'm not looking for a relationship right now." The only problem with offering reasons why you declined is that it can give someone something to argue against, in which case you can just repeat "no, thank you" as needed.

If you want to go to the stake dance and have a good time with your friends, do it! You don't need to go to great lengths to avoid the guys in question; just try to pretend they're not there at all and do what you'd normally like to do. If a situation where you can't ignore them comes up, be polite to them, and leave the situation when you can. Hope you have fun!

- Eirene

Question #67288 posted on 04/21/2012 3:44 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I really love beautiful things -both tangible and intangible. Growing up I was never well-off, but as I get older, I aspire to be able to provide comfortably for myself and create a life that is beautiful in many ways -including aesthetically. I would like to be able to dress well (not expensively, but well), take care of myself physically, eat healthy food, live in a decent home in a clean neighborhood with working appliances, etc. Sometimes I get frustrated with my financial situation, because I'm unable to do these things.
My question for you is: at what point does this desire become unrighteous? I would not like to own a yacht or an excessive collection of Prada handbags. But I would like to have the means to establish a pleasing living space and present myself in a pleasing manner. The idea that this might be an unrighteous desire upsets me. I don't want to live in a dirty, run-down apartment and buy my clothing at Walmart for the rest of my life. Might that be judged as selfish or materialistic of me?

Eagerly awaiting your opinions,
-Schön das Leben

A:

Dear Schoen,

The desires that you expressed are not unreasonable by any means. Here's one way of looking at it: our church buildings aren't extravagant, but they definitely have extra features that are solely for beauty or comfort (artwork, vaulted chapel ceilings, padded seats, and so forth). Temples have even more features that only serve to make the building beautiful, both inside and out. I think that shows that God is okay with spending money on things that are not strictly functional. It's even encouraged to appreciate the beautiful things in our lives.

Being a good member of the Church or a good Christian doesn't mean that you have to live on the bare bones of a budget and give everything else to charity. I think that as long as you're able to give tithes and fast offerings freely and joyfully, then your attitude regarding your prosperity is probably healthy and appropriate. If, however, you start feeling stingy with these donations, or start forgetting that everything you have truly belongs to the Lord, then you'll know that your attitude needs adjustment. When the time comes that you can afford more comforts, enjoy what you have and especially, enjoy being able to give to others.

- Eirene

Question #67262 posted on 04/21/2012 3:44 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

If you could travel back in time to save one TV show from being cancelled, which one would you choose? How do you think it would have ended?

-The Keeper

A:

Dear Keeper,

First reaction: Woody's Roundup. He would have saved the day and maybe then everyone involved could have been better-adjusted. On the other hand, this'd mess up the plot of Toy Story 2, which was cool the way it was, so maybe I'd just leave things how they are.  

I'm also a bit of a fan of Red Green. I think it wasn't exactly cancelled, but it is no longer being made, and it's the sort of thing that should never end. 

~Professor Kirke

A:

Dear Jack Jackrum,

Early Edition, hands down. I also have vague memories of this show called Now and Again which only lasted a season, and I feel like it was interesting. 

Duct Tape Forever!

-Azriel

A:

Dear Oliver Wood,

Everyone is thinking it, but I'll say it: Arrested Development. It would have ended with the whole Bluth family going to jail, alluding to the series finale of the only other viable TV comedy that rivals their show.

-Art Vandelay

A:

Dear The Keeper,

I would second Art's nomination of Arrested Development, but since they're making a movie, I feel like this is already being brought back from the dead. 

I would bring back Veronica Mars. Hands down. I loved that show to death and since they thought they were getting renewed for a fourth season (only to have that be snatched from them), they left the show on a terrible cliffhanger. Actually, the cliffhanger was really good, but the entire episode plays out like a season finale, not a series finale. As such there are a ton of unresolved plot holes in the series at the end. 

Such a bummer that it was cancelled. Really. I hate spending money on TV shows. It usually only happens when they are a really, really good sale (like the first 4 seasons of Dexter for $30 -- that was a good deal) but I own every season of Veronica Mars and paid full price for every season. That's how good this show is. 

-Watts

Question #67216 posted on 04/21/2012 3:44 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I was reading in the New Testament today and came across again the part in Luke (also in Matthew and Mark, I believe) where Jesus says, without clarification as far as I can tell, that there is no marriage in heaven. I then went and read D&C 132, which it cross-referenced, as well as the footnotes, which added the tag "temporal marriage".

Obviously, we believe that there IS marriage in heaven, by the sealing power. I myself am sealed and I believe that my marriage is eternal. But how do we reconcile Christ's words in the New Testament and his words later to Joseph Smith, confirming that there IS? Was it just a matter of a change in policy of sorts? Is it an interpretation thing or an error in translation? If it's an eternal principle, why would Christ pretty unequivocally tell the Sadduccees that it wasn't? I haven't so far been able to answer these questions, and I've come across nonmembers who want to know the foundation for our belief in temple marriages. I'd be happy to be directed to further reading or a talk or whatever.

-Antonia

A:

Dear Antonia,

Explanation for you:

Something like that indeed appears in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. In this answer I looked at Matthew 22:32-32 but they're all essentially the same. In this passage, the Sadducees criticized the resurrection using an example involving marriage. Here's a superficial reading of verse 30, the verse in question: "For in the resurrection they [meaning all people] neither marry [meaning get married or be married or anything], nor are given in marriage, but are as the angels of God in heaven."

But, let us apply ourselves and consider what the word marry means. The word 'marry' used here, in the original Greek (not to mention in the current English), means 'get married.' For example, after I am married, I will not marry for the rest of my life. I will still be married but will not marry. Same thing for 'given in marriage.' So all Christ actually said is that no one will get married in the resurrection. Furthermore, let's consider who 'they' are. Christ is commenting on a story about eight individuals (read the context). The most logical antecedent for 'they' would be those eight individuals, so really the most conservative way to read his point is that none of the eight individuals in the story will get married after the resurrection.

Christ did not try to fully explain the doctrine of eternal marriage or give a comprehensive response to the Sadducees' implied argument; he just told the Saducees they were wrong, identified a facet of the true doctrine of marriage that'd be easy for his listeners to comprehend and agree with, and then made his real point, which was that the resurrection is true doctrine. This isn't the most direct way to respond to the question, but Christ, in his wisdom, typically did not respond to questions on the questioner's original terms. 

The doctrine has always been the same. Sometimes only parts of it are explained, which allows the so inclined to jump to poor conclusions, but when we compare the full explanation in D&C 132 with everything else that's been said there are no contradictions. So knowing that, here's the main points I'd make in explaining this to interested non-members.

Talking points for non-members:

What's the definition of marry? - To get married.

Who are they? - We don't know but can't assume it must mean everyone ever.

What is Jesus trying to do? - He's trying to communicate briefly, in a public debate setting, that the resurrection is true doctrine and that the Sadducees don't understand his doctrine about marriage. He's not trying to explain everything there is to know or respond to the Saducees on their own terms. We agree with what he said, that there will be no new marriages in heaven; thankfully he's now also revealed how our current marriages can endure even in heaven.

If that doesn't convince someone that our doctrine makes some sense, then they're probably just going to want to Bible bash with you, and it's not worth trying to argue. 

~Professor Kirke