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Making the Case that Jesus was Married (Part 1 of 6)

In 1969, Ogden Kraut published the book, Jesus Was Married.  In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the book, we’re sitting down with Anne Wilde and David Patrick.  Anne was Ogden’s second wife and typed up the manuscript for Jesus Was Married.  She believes Jesus was the groom at the Wedding at Cana.

Anne:  If you know Jewish tradition very well, you understand that the parents are the ones who arranged a marriage.  They are the hosts of the marriage.  So it was very common for a mother or a father of the bridegroom to make sure everything went smoothly.  So when Mary went to Jesus and said about the wine, why would she do that unless she was the mother, or the parent of whoever was getting married?

I’d also like to introduce David Patrick, an apostle for Christ’s Church (The Righteous Branch.)

David:  My name is David Patrick and I am a member of Christ’s Church, also known as The Branch.  We have members in Utah, Nevada, Arizona, and a few other states, but we are a small group.  We have been active as a faith since 1978, though I have not been involved with that since that time.  We go around doing various firesides and talks.  The subject matter of Jesus was married, or was Jesus married?

In April of 1978, Gerald Peterson Sr. was requested of the Lord to organize a new church.  That was April.  Then you’ve got proliferation from that time of its membership.  It’s ebbed and it’s flowed in its membership over that time.  That’s over 40 years ago now.

What do you think about these claims that Jesus was married?  Do you agree?  Check out our conversation….

It’s been 50 years since Ogden Kraut published the book “Jesus Was Married.” Anne Wilde reflects on helping her past husband write the book.


P.S.  Gospel Tangents is now part of the Dialogue Network of Podcasts!  Don’t miss out announcement!

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Message to Critics & Believers of Joseph Smith (Part 6 of 6)

One of the things I find really interesting about Dr. Larry Foster is that he seems to disagree with both critics and supporters of Joseph Smith.   In our final conversation with Larry, we will close up some loose ends and seek to find a middle ground that best explain Joseph Smith.

Larry:  I think it’s really hard for people who have the sort of complete hero worship idea, or sort of a pasteboard saint, to really understand Joseph Smith. It’s really hard for people who think he was just a total scoundrel and crook and con man and confidence man, or whatever it was, to see him properly. I think that there’s an element of both in him. So, my latest piece on trying to reconcile the fact that so many people for so many years, have either thought that he was a true prophet of God that could do no evil, or he was a terrible scoundrel and con man.

I think that the fact that so many people have had those opposing viewpoints [means that neither can be the whole truth.] I always believe that most people are trying to do the right thing or be honest, unless I see otherwise. So, I think there’s something that’s very special about Joseph Smith. There’s also some stuff about him that looks like he’s manipulative, and so forth. So, I argue that he was genuinely committed to his religious beliefs and ideals, but that he was also willing to cut corners and even lie or make false statements in order to try to accomplish his goals.

GT:  Now, I just spoke with Dan Vogel recently.

Larry:  Yeah, we’re very much on the same page on this.

GT:  So, you would go with pious fraud?

Larry:  No, I don’t use that. [I call him] a sincere charlatan. That was the term that I developed. I think pious and fraud both are [problematic.] Pious sounds like you’re not really true, and fraud is fraud. I mean, charlatan, trickster would be better, maybe than charlatan. But I think that he really had a genuine religious vision and ideals. I also think that he was willing to manipulate other people as part of that in ways that from outsiders’ perspective look like he was a fraud. If you don’t bring the two together, you can’t understand the overall dynamic. He was a great man. He was also a flawed man. And he, of course, recognized that the prophet is a prophet only when it’s acting as such. But even though he was acting as such, sometimes he may have deviated.

Dr. Larry Foster addresses both fans and critics of Joseph Smith.

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Assessing Joseph Smith (Part 5 of 6)

Joseph Smith said his name would be known for good and evil.  Boy was he right. Dr. Larry Foster thinks the truth is somewhere in the middle and dismisses both strong critics and strong apologists who don’t recognize the complexities of Joseph.

Larry:  It seems clear to me after more than 40 years of studying Joseph Smith, among a number of other things, that one has to separate behavior of a prophet from the teachings of the Prophet. Brigham Young himself said, he didn’t care if Joseph Smith did all sorts of terrible things, but he was still a prophet of God. That’s what was important to him. That was in the Journal of Discourses, by the way, I’m not quoting him [directly], but I’m just giving the general gist of it.

Prophets often are a little bit excessive in various ways, including sexually. But I’d say it should not necessarily be viewed as discrediting their larger teachings.  Let’s take a case that is not religious. Isaac Newton was a really weird character, really, really weird character. He was also absolutely brilliant. He developed all sorts of ideas about celestial mechanics and how the world works. He was a man who is unparalleled genius. But that doesn’t have anything to do with the validity or lack of validity of his [ideas about] celestial mechanics. I think that we would be well not to assume that one possible defect of a prophetic leader, if that’s what it was, a defect, necessarily discounts the positive accomplishments that they’ve made. Right now, we’ve just had a devastating blockbuster set of revelations on Martin Luther King Jr.’s, much wider than we had expected sexual life, and it’s really painful for many of us, who highly regarded him, but he still was a great man. He did some very important things, even if he had feet of clay in one area.  I think [that if] Latter-day Saints are serious about understanding Joseph Smith, [they] need to be aware that there is this problem with his behavior toward the end of his life.  Some of it is organized, and some of it can be explained. But it’s very hard, ultimately. In Section 132, he reports something to the effect that God forgives him for any sins he might have committed or might commit in the future. That’s a pretty broad thing.

Joseph Smith said his name would be known for good and evil. Boy was he right!

What do you think about Joseph Smith?  Check out our conversation….

Don’t miss our other episodes with Dr. Larry Foster.

338: Interesting Defenses of Polygamy

337:  Comparing Mormons, Shakers, & Oneida

336:  Explaining Polygamy from non-Mormon Viewpoint

335:  Celibacy, Polygamy, & Free Love in 19th Century