Chronicles of a changed person

Many of us grew up as members of the LDS church or otherwise were raised with the teaching that the consumption of drinks containing alcohol was forbidden.  After I had settled down from a protracted phase of rebellion, I declared in my new-found conversion, with my face to the heavens, that I would never take another drink of an alcoholic beverage again.  I looked with envy upon those few stalwart individuals I knew, who I felt honestly could approach their God at death, and declare “alcohol has never passed these lips.”  In my minds eye I could envision Heavenly Father wrapping them in His arms, pressing them close to His bosom, and for that one act of heroic abstinence declaring to them, “Well done, my faithful son, enter into My kingdom.”  Actually I could imagine this about many more women than men that I knew, but that’s an aside that takes this in the wrong direction.

Early on, in my [as of late] re-new-found conversion to true principles which include remembering the restoration begun by Joseph Smith, I was invited to a Sacrament Service where wine would be used as the emblem to represent the sacrifice of the Lord’s blood.  I was asked to make the wine because of an off the cuff remark I made about wanting to try my hand at wine making sometime, because that would now be “legal” under the idea of remembering the restoration.  With trepidation I agreed, and proceeded in my idiocy of the topic to dump twelve bottles of grape juice with the whole grapes still in the bottles, which looked like they were getting old in our fruit room, into a five gallon bucket.  I mashed the grapes in the juice with an old plaster stirrer (looks like a big potato masher), covered the bucket with cheese cloth, because it was fruit fly season, and set the bucket in a dark place to turn itself into wine.  Within three days, I knew it was on its way, because you could smell it all over the house.  Oh! Those were days never to be forgotten.

The Sacrament emblems were to be partaken of two weeks from the day I began this new wine.  No problem, I thought, the way this stuff has taken off we’ll have plenty of time.  The day before the big day, my wife and I poured the stuff in the bucket through the cheese cloth, and tasted it.  YUK!  We both looked at each other with that look which says, “I’m sure we just poisoned ourselves.”  I thought we’d be dead within fifteen minutes, for sure.  Well, that didn’t happen, and when we finally realized it was probably harmless and just tasted bad, we knew we could fix that.  Four or five cups of sugar should just about do it, and five did it.  Kind of on the order of, “just a spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down…” (you supply the melody.)  Well, to make this story shorter and to get on with what I really want to say;  everyone at the Sacrament Meeting lied and said the “wine” really tasted good (how would they know? None there knew what wine should taste like), and a couple of individuals exhibited signs of it really “gladdening their hearts.”  Prohibition had finally ended for this small group with a one-half-full plastic cup each.

Preserving the Restoration is now in full swing.  D&C 89 is no longer a stunting hinderance to pure worship, but has resumed its rightful place as a “Word of Wisdom, not by way of commandment.”

We can now eat and drink our fill, not only because of an admonition “to be free,” (with which I heartedly concur), but the wine these days sometimes really tastes good, and goes down real smooth.  “You’ve gotta love it, baby!” (Hotrod Huntley.)  In fact we’ve come so far that in the wilderness south of Moab a few weeks ago, a table was covered with dozens of bottles of wine of every label and ilk.  I personally contributed five bottles of a ruby red, clear, delicious wine of my own make.  The wine flowed freely; in some circles without inhibition.  Every last drop of the labeled, and the ilk, was drunk.  Some boasted with somewhat slurred speech they had gladdened their hearts with 5 or 6 cups full, as they fell into the long lines in front of the Porta-Johns.

Has the pendulum swung?  Do we now “drink?”  Or do we yet “Partake” of our Lord’s Sacrament?  Is the emphasis on the wine, or on “the blood of the Lamb?”  Well, I have come upon a barometer of wine consumption, with decorum being exhibited in the lower degrees of the scale, while the upper would tend to bawdiness.  Actually this scale was developed in 375 B.C.  It says:

Three bowls (archaic for glasses) only do I serve for the temperate:
one for health, which they empty first;
the second for love and pleasure;
and the third for sleep.
When this bowl is drunk up, wise guests go home.

The fourth bowl is ours no longer, but belongs to violence;
the fifth to uproar; 
the sixth to drunken revel;
the seventh to black eyes;
the eighth is the policeman’s;
the ninth belongs to biliousness; and
the tenth to madness and hurling the furniture.
—Eubulus (ca. 375 B.C.)

Recently I also stumbled on to something which I have read many times, but only just recently have I seen it.  “That inasmuch as any man [or woman] drinketh wine or strong drink among you, behold it is not good, neither meet in the sight of your Father, only in assembling yourselves to offer up your sacraments before Him.” (D&C 89: 5. Emphasis is mine and is what I saw.)

If we combine the wisdom of Eubulus with the wisdom of The Word of Wisdom, it would seem to me, to be logical that in partaking of wine in our sacraments, we should seldom, if ever, exceed one glass.  It would also seem illogical that our assembling together to offer up our “Sacraments” before Him should include a second glass whose stated effect is to induce a desire for love and pleasure, or for sure a third glass, whose purpose is to produce drowsiness in an assembly whose avowed purpose is alertness to promptings of the Spirit; And Eubulus points out everything after this just goes down hill.

Many of us, perhaps I would say most of us in this movement, are making a cultural switch from total abstinence, to the ingesting of wine two to three, and even more times per week.  In a culture where alcohol is completely forbidden there was no process to model and foster a constructive use of wine.  But research has shown that when communities come together, and the first instructions to their children include the teaching of appropriate benedictions for bread and wine, and wine is taught as something sacred, it is much less likely that members of that society will abuse alcohol.  Children learn to understand drinking as an act of communion, and drunkenness as a profanity; a perversion of the sacred use of wine.  The more the consumption of alcohol is tied to the socialization process within the family and the community, the more responsible all become.  In the family, children, and adults learn how to drink, and simultaneously how not to drink.  Hence the requirement in the above quoted verse:  “…Only in assembling yourselves…” [in every possible vein you can think of that in].

As every chronicle should have a summing up and a conclusion, here is all I can think of to propose based on the foregoing facts:  If you are going to drink at that upcoming sacramental wedding,  fill that glass to the 5-7 oz mark and revel in the gladdening of a more healthy heart, and how joyous the occasion has become.  Then as someone fills the wedding couples second glass, the attending company toasts with the remaining drops of their first glassful the departure of the happy couple, who, when they arrive at their nights lodging will just be coming into the glorious effects Eubulus proposes for that second glassful.  The residue can then drive home, neither too sleepy, nor over the legal limit.

And now if you will all excuse me, dinner is on the table, and I think I will break the seal on that Cabernet Sauvignon I’ve been saving, to pair with that enticingly aromatic ribeye steak sizzling on our plates; after which I fully intend to pour for ourselves that second glass. Mazel Tov!

Keith Henderson

Two Items


It is time to see to it that all baptisms or re-baptisms first performed according to the Doctrine of Christ for the calendar year of 2015 are sent to us. As of July 1, 2016 the names we have received for 2015 will be hand-written in the archival temple book. The requirement upon us is that the names be entered into this book in alphabetical order, meaning that any names sent after this above date will not be entered into the main body of the alphabetically listed names, but will be put in an addendum established to record names which have been sent in late.

Please keep in mind this is a handwritten record done in non-erasable archival ink on archival paper. The ink and the paper bond. It is necessary for us to establish a deadline for inclusion in order for us to then collate according to the alphabet, and begin the handwriting process.

Please also remember we only record your name once. If you have sent us your name for a baptism done in a previous year do not re-send it to us. However, if you are not sure it has been sent, please, by all means, send it to us.

Keith Henderson
Central Recorder


I was baptized by my father when I turned eight just like the scriptures say I should have been. Why should I be re-baptized?


“There is coming distress. Those who believe Christ’s doctrine will need the required baptism to survive judgments to come. This is the only way to face Him when He comes again.” (Denver C. Snuffer, Preserving the Restoration. P. 521.)


It is indeed required in the scriptures to be baptized at eight years of age. This same scripture also tells us this baptism was done in regards to the “remission of sins.” (D&C 68: 27.) In other words, through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, all sins committed after baptism would fall under that wonderful atonement, and could, with repentance, be erased and considered payed for through the atoning sacrifice of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ.

It certainly is a requirement that we teach our little children about repentance and faith in Christ, the Son of the living God, and the gift of the Holy Ghost, and to see to it they are baptized for the remission of sins when eight years of age. (See D&C 68: 25-27.) There is no age in a person’s life when the symbol of baptism more appropriately emulates and symbolizes our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, than in a little child at age eight. They stand on the razor’s edge of innocence and accountability. They have not the capability to sin, and no sin as yet can be charged to them, but now they have arrived at a period of accountability, for the things they do after will be theirs. It is the epitome of the symbol of Christ who never sinned, but carried the accountability for the sins of all repentant mankind and for Adam’s transgression, upon His own shoulders. It is innocence that has arrived at accountability, and helps us to see more clearly the Saviors greatness and love for us. The child is to be baptized just as they arrive at this razor’s edge of sinlessness and accountability. And for all the faithful, this is the first baptism.

But the Savior has not left it at that, for we read in 3 Nephi 11:37-38, “And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and become as a little child, and be baptized in my name, or ye can in nowise receive these things. And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and be baptized in my name, and become as a little child, or ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God.”

This cannot be the baptism which is required of a little child at the age of eight, but can only be after the person has lived life for a period of time. It comes after the now adult believes he already knows something, and has become unwilling to receive more. It is after the person has learned a discipline of study, and thinks the gospel should be viewed by the tools of that study and discipline. It is after the person has some regrets about things they have done, or said, or become, or have not done or become. It is after we realize that we have been immersed in the understanding of men, and have become arrogant before God. It is after we have lost those pure joys that came as a child when we learned new things. It is after we have stopped trusting. It is after we no longer will jump into the open and willing arms of a loving father.

It is only after our eyes have been opened, and we have come to the realization that we are not getting anywhere by what we’ve already done. Then we see we need to abandon old ways and begin anew. We need to go back, instead of ploughing ahead, because we have come to realize our direction has been wrong.

D&C 20: 37. “And again, by way of commandment to the church concerning the manner of baptism – All those who humble themselves before God, and desire to be baptized, and come forth with broken hearts and contrite spirits, and witness before the church that they have truly repented of all their sins, and are willing to take upon them the name of Jesus Christ, having a determination to serve him to the end, and truly manifest by their works that they have received of the Spirit of Christ unto the remission of their sins, shall be received by baptism into His church.” (D&C 10: 64-70.)

When we’ve done all this, and come to realize that all are saved on exactly the same principles, we have begun to repent, and the first fruit of repentance is always baptism. (Moroni 8: 25.) We have then come to the appropriate time when baptism is again required. It is now time for the second baptism. This is the baptism 3 Nephi 11: 37-38 is speaking of and pointing to, and without it, “ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God.”

This that I write is not complete, for there is a great revelation connected with this subject for anyone that seeks it. This is what should be taught to the people.

May God bless our efforts.

Keith Henderson