I have studied enough history to know that pretty much every extraordinary person who changed history in a significant way was deeply flawed in some way - or can be dismissed easily by someone who doesn't want to accept him or her as what s/he claimed to be.
from a non-Christian perspective, without the Savior and Redeemer reinterpretation of the promised
Messiah's mission, Jesus of Nazareth was an abject failure - just one of
multiple rabble-rousers and would-be-reformers killed by the Romans in
that era. I'm not saying he failed or that he was just another guy who
got lucky by having Saul/Paul spread his message; I'm saying it is the
easiest thing in the world to look at his life and laugh at the claims
about him. They simply aren't supported by "the facts" - but I still
have no problem believing he actually could have been God's chosen
representative to save and exalt His children. I can take that
literally or figuratively - or both. I love what he taught, so I accept
it came from God - even as I understand the intellectual questions that
can't be answered satisfactorily.
Moses was an escaped murderer; Samson's sexual obsession with an untrustworthy person led to his capture, blindness, and eventual death; David's lust caused him to conspire to murder his desire's husband and eventually led to civil strife and the death of his son; Noah got dead drunk and fathered his own grandchild; Abraham was willing to sacrifice his son to his god (which is seen only as acceptable because future generations saw a Christ-type in the story); Gandhi had some weird issues; Winston Churchill was a mean drunk; etc.
admire Joseph Smith, overall, even as I don't accept some of the things he did as
being of God but rather being a result of his natural man. I like that he described himself as a rough stone rolling
and that he was the most chastised person, by far, in the D&C.
just wish we all accepted his self-evaluation in those times of candor. It would allow us to accept him for the person he really was, not the caricature we have created in his place.
Taking One For The Team
2 hours ago