Righteous Dominion

Personal Source: Unrighteous Dominion

Earl Taylor and Dennis Barney Digging Ditches in Hyder, Arizona

"...it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion." D&C 121:39

Earl Taylor and my Dad, Dennis Barney were teenagers in the late 1950's and early 1960's. My Grandfather Talmage Barney was a farmer. Earl lived across the street. One summer Grandpa Talmage sent Earl and Dennis out to scorching hot Hyder, Arizona, hundreds of miles past the middle of nowhere to dig ditches and put concrete liners in them. Brutal hard work and all kinds of crazy stories that go with it. But, one story is one of the most important and defining stories of my Dad's life, and then of my life.

Even as a teenager, Earl was an unusually spiritual and disciplined person. When my dad would talk about Earl, he put him on a higher plane than himself. During that time working on ditches in Hyder, Earl got my Dad to memorize a bunch of scriptures but most notably D&C 121, the scripture that teaches about Unrighteous Dominion. My Grandpa suggested the idea to Earl, but Earl was perfect for the job and I am eternally grateful to him. Follow the link below for a video of Earl telling about Hyder. It is just the way I've heard it from my Dad my whole life, just from Earl's perspective.

As a result of that, my entire life, I would hear my Dad recite those words many times as the situation called for it. Of all the countless things my Dad taught me, these words were some of the most core and foundational. My Dad taught me how this applied in all aspects of life. Family. Church. Work. And certainly Government. My Dad died January 5, 2009 on a Monday morning. That prior Friday morning, January 2, I was at the home of close friend Bill Norton with Earl and his son, close friend Jared Taylor. I cite Bill and Jared along with Barb Stowell as core collaborators in writing The Fortress Stone, an Anthem to the Constitution. I call Jared my Constitutional bellwether.

So there I was with Earl Taylor himself, the reason for my Dad having carried those sacred words his whole life, and two of my closest friends and Constitutional, Righteous Dominion collaborators. My Dad randomly called during our meeting. I put him on speaker and said, Dad, guess who is here? Earl Taylor! Without a pause, my Dad went on to recite all of this, word for word:

D&C 121

34 Behold, there are many called, but few are chosen. And why are they not chosen?

35 Because their hearts are set so much upon the things of this world, and aspire to the honors of men, that they do not learn this one lesson—

36 That the rights of the priesthood are inseparably connected with the powers of heaven, and that the powers of heaven cannot be controlled nor handled only upon the principles of righteousness.

37 That they may be conferred upon us, it is true; but when we undertake to cover our sins, or to gratify our pride, our vain ambition, or to exercise control or dominion or compulsion upon the souls of the children of men, in any degree of unrighteousness, behold, the heavens withdraw themselves; the Spirit of the Lord is grieved; and when it is withdrawn, Amen to the priesthood or the authority of that man.

38 Behold, ere he is aware, he is left unto himself, to kick against the pricks, to persecute the saints, and to fight against God.

39 We have learned by sad experience that it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority, as they suppose, they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.

40 Hence many are called, but few are chosen.

41 No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned;

42 By kindness, and pure knowledge, which shall greatly enlarge the soul without hypocrisy, and without guile—

43 Reproving betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost; and then showing forth afterwards an increase of love toward him whom thou hast reproved, lest he esteem thee to be his enemy;

44 That he may know that thy faithfulness is stronger than the cords of death.

45 Let thy bowels also be full of charity towards all men, and to the household of faith, and let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God; and the doctrine of the priesthood shall distil upon thy soul as the dews from heaven.

46 The Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion, and thy scepter an unchanging scepter of righteousness and truth; and thy dominion shall be an everlasting dominion, and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever.

That was the last real conversation I had with my Dad and the last message I heard from his voice, re-teaching one last time these incredibly sacred principles. 72 hours later he would be gone. Thank you to Earl, and thank you to my Dad for making these words foundational to what I believe and how I try to operate in this world. Hopefully this helps you understand why I share these principles with such urgency and ask others, especially those entrusted with dominion over others, to avoid Unrighteous Dominion in all things.

I asked Earl to share that story as part of a life history video about my Dad and Grandpa Talmage.

Pendulum Jail for Morrison

Graphic: The Balanced Pendulum of
Government Control
(PDF Version)

"Still Mine" Movie: The Proper and
Balanced Role of Government


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