“That Neibaur brought a knowledge of Kabbalah to Nauvoo has been mentioned in several studies of the period. For instance, Newel and Avery note in their biography of Emma Smith, ‘Through Alexander Neibaur, Joseph Smith had access to ancient Jewish rites called cabalism... That he not only knew something of Kabbalah, but apparently possessed a collection of original Jewish Kabbalistic works in Nauvoo, is however documented in material almost totally overlooked by Mormon historians.“Can anyone familiar with the history and personality of Joseph Smith--the prophet who restored the secret knowledge and rituals conveyed to Adam, translated the works of Abraham, Enoch, and Moses, and retranslated Genesis--question that he would have been interested in the original version of this Jewish occult tradition? And here, in Neibaur, was a man who could share a version of that knowledge with him. Whatever the reasons for the similarities, it should be remembered that the Hermetic-Kabbalistic world view parallels Joseph’s vision of God in many particulars. Not only might Joseph have been interested in this material, but he would have noted how similar this sacred, secret tradition was with his own restoration of ancient truth. And perhaps Neibaur, on a religious quest--from Judaism and Kabbalah, Europe and England, to Christianity and Mormonism and a new home in Nauvoo--saw or even amplified that intrinsic sympathy in his explications of the tradition for Joseph.“Whatever the reasons for the similarities, it should be remembered that the Hermetic-Kabbalistic world view parallels Joseph’s vision of God in many particulars. Not only might Joseph have been interested in this material, but he would have noted how similar this sacred, secret tradition was with his own restoration of ancient truth. And perhaps Neibaur, on a religious quest--from Judaism and Kabbalah, Europe and England, to Christianity and Mormonism and a new home in Nauvoo--saw or even amplified that intrinsic sympathy in his explications of the tradition for Joseph.“Certainly the first text Joseph Smith would have confronted was the Zohar, the great heart of the Kabbalah. This is one of the works Neibaur cited repeatedly in his article and, as the central text of Kabbalah, is the key book any individual with Kabbalistic interests would have preserved in his library. Familiarity with the Zohar was a given for a Kabbalist, particularly one with knowledge of works as divergent as those cited by Neibaur, all of which expounded in some degree upon themes in the Zohar. If Neibaur had read to Joseph from any single text, or explained Kabbalistic concepts contained in a principal book, the Zohar would have been the book with which to start. This might explain why in 1844 Smith, in what may be his single greatest discourse and in the most important public statement of his theosophical vision, apparently quotes almost word for word from the first section of the Zohar.” (“Joseph Smith and Kabbalah: The Occult Connection”)
Smith’s other Jewish apostle and close colleague, Orson Hyde, made a trip to Jerusalem in the 1830s to dedicate the restoration of Israel to the Jews. According to Ivan P. Barrett’s Joseph Smith and the Restoration:
“‘In 1823 only a handful of Jews lived in Palestine, and those who did had no rights under Turkish rule. The roots of Zionism in the Jewish communities of Europe were barely stirring and the thought of Jews gathering at all was virtually unheard of let alone a return of the Jews to the Land of Palestine. But from that very time on, the spiritual stirrings of the Zionist movement began in earnest. God was about to give to special ‘keys’ to modern prophets as he had done with ancient ones; ‘keys’ to move the nations.
“In 1831, only a year after the Church was organized by Joseph Smith, another young man with a prophetic call by the name of Orson Hyde, age 26, of Jewish ancestry, was confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints by the Prophet Joseph. When Joseph laid his hands on the head of Orson Hyde he gave him a unique blessing where in he prophesied the following:
“In due time thou shalt go to Jerusalem, the land of they fathers, and be a watchman unto the House of Israel; and by thy hands shall the Most High do a great work, which shall prepare the way and greatly facilitate the gathering of that People.” (Barrett, p. 469)
(Notice the Six-Pointed Star above the doorway.)
“J. P. Morgan, the Rothschild’s representative in the United States, set up a trust fund to unite various Christian denominations. [Charles Taze] Russell...praises this in his January 1, 1911 [Watch Tower]... ‘Mr. Morgan’s well-known business capacity, exhibited in connection with financial trusts, encourages many to believe that he will accomplish the desired end in connection with the movement. More and more all denominations are craving a religious trust or federation and are becoming more and more willing to sacrifice doctrines and principles formerly held dear in order to accomplish the federation.’” - 215:538
“Finding her way to Gaul—where established Jewish communities already existed—the Magdalen...found refuge for her and her treasures. The bloodline...perpetuated itself, intact and incognito, for some four hundred years—...including dynastic intermarriages not only with other Jewish families but with Romans and Visigoths as well. And...in the fifth century Jesus’ lineage became allied with the royal line of the Franks, thereby engendering the Merovingian dynasty.
“This would explain the sacred status accorded the Merovingians, the legendary birth of Merovee—child of two fathers, one of them a symbolic marine creature from beyond the sea, a marine creature which, like Jesus, might be equated with a mystical fish—The Fisher King.” (Library of Halexandria)
The Zero Meridian is the 33rd degree longitude.
“The seeds of decay were sown in the Order of the Temple at its origin. Hypocrisy is a mortal disease. It had conceived a great work which it was incapable of executing, because it knew neither humility nor personal abnegation, because Rome was then invincible, and because the later Chiefs of the Order did not comprehend its mission. Moreover, the Templars were in general uneducated, and capable only of wielding the sword, with no qualifications for governing, and at need enchaining, that Queen of the World called Opinion...“Hugues de Payens himself had not that keen and far-sighted intellect nor that grandeur of purpose which afterward distinguished the military founder of another soldiery that became formidable to kings. The Templars were unintelligent and therefore unsuccessful Jesuits.“Their watchword was to become wealthy, in order to buy the world. They became so, and in 1312 they possessed in Europe alone more than nine thousand seignories. Riches were the shoal on which they were wrecked. They became insolent, and unwisely showed their contempt for the religious and social institutions which they aimed to overthrow. Their ambition was fatal to them. Their projects were divined and prevented... Pope Clement V, and King Philip le Bel gave the signal to Europe, and the Templars, taken as it were in an immense net, were arrested, disarmed, and cast into prison. Never was a Coup d' Etat accomplished with a more formidable concert of action. The whole world was struck with stupor, and eagerly waited for the strange revelations of a process that was to echo through so many ages.”(p. 820)
“Blessed John Duns Scotus (1265/66 – 8th November 1308), besides being known as the ‘Subtle Doctor’, is also referred to as the ‘Marian Doctor’. It was he who presented a systematic theology of the Marian privilege of the Immaculate Conception, which the Catholic Church officially proclaimed as a Dogma of Faith in the Apostolic Constitution Ineffabilis Deus of Pope Pius IX (8th December 1854), of which we are this year celebrating the 150th anniversary.” (“John Duns Scotus and His Defence of the Immaculate Conception”)
“More than two centuries before the Reformation, a theological debate broke out that pitted theologian Thomas Aquinas against an upstart from Britain, John Duns Scotus. In essence, the debate circled around the question, ‘Would Christmas have occurred if humanity had not sinned?’“Whereas Aquinas viewed the Incarnation as God’s remedy for a fallen planet, his contemporary saw much more at stake. For Duns Scotus, the Word becoming flesh as described in the prologue to John’s Gospel must surely represent the Creator’s primary design, not some kind of afterthought or Plan B. Aquinas pointed to passages emphasizing the Cross as God’s redemptive response to a broken relationship. Duns Scotus cited passages from Ephesians and Colossians on the cosmic Christ, in whom all things have their origin, hold together, and move toward consummation...“...Though most theologians tended to follow Aquinas, in recent years prominent Catholics such as Karl Rahner have taken a closer look at Duns Scotus. Perhaps evangelicals should, too.” (“Ongoing Incarnation”)
“…The kings’ increasing ability to claim the loyalty of the local clergy and to collect church taxes helped create several quasi-national churches that officially were part of the Roman Catholic Church but were increasingly under royal control. The Babylonian Captivity, along with the Hundred Years War then going on, also triggered challenges to papal authority from two other directions: church councils and popular heresies.” (“Schism & heresies in late medieval Europe”)
The Great Schism and Conciliar movement“The resentment that the Babylonian Captivity aroused against the Church grew worse when the popes tried to move back to Rome. By the 1370’s, the turmoil of the Hundred Years War was making life at Avignon increasingly dangerous. The capture and ransoming of Pope Innocent VI by a company of English mercenaries (who had little use for a French pope, anyway) convinced Pope Gregory XI to move to Rome. However, at this time, Rome was a more dangerous place to live in during times of ‘peace’ than France was during war. It took Gregory three attempts to get into Rome, and once he got in, he quickly decided he wanted to leave and return to Avignon. Unfortunately, Gregory died before he could get out.“For the first time in 70 years, Rome was the scene of a papal election, and the Roman mob clamored outside for an Italian pope. Under such pressure, the College of Cardinals elected an Italian, Urban VI, as the next pope. Unfortunately, Urban was something of a violent and bigoted man whose actions drove all but three cardinals back to Avignon where they elected a second pope. Thus began the Great Schism, a period of turmoil when the Church was divided in its loyalty between two lines of popes, one French and one Italian. To no one’s surprise, each pope refused to recognize the other and even excommunicated him and his followers. This led to enormous anxiety among devout Christians, who found themselves supposedly excommunicated by one pope or the other. With neither pope willing to resign, something had to be done.“The most popular suggestion was a general church council such as the ones summoned to solve major disputes in the past. There were several problems with this solution. First of all, popes traditionally called such councils, and neither pope was willing to call such a council. This made the legality of such a council questionable if not called by at least one pope. Second, different rulers in Europe supported particular popes, largely for political reasons. Such political divisions made it almost impossible to get people to agree on the site of a council, not to mention the deeper issues involved. Finally, the whole issue of a Church council raised the question: if a council could depose the pope, who was the real head of the Church? This was a question that lingered on long after the Great Schism had faded away.“At last, a council was called at Pisa, Italy in 1409. It deposed the two rival popes and elected a third. Unfortunately, neither original pope recognized the council’s power to depose a pope, so now the Church had three popes. However, by this time, people were committed to the idea of a church council, and another one was called at Constance, Switzerland. All three popes were deposed, and a fourth, Martin V, was elected. Although one of the deposed popes held on in Avignon until 1429, the Great Schism ended here. Its effects did not, because it caused people all over Western Europe to question the authority of the pope in the Church. Although a single pope once again ruled the Church, his reputation and authority were permanently undermined.” (“Schism & heresies in late medieval Europe”)
“In one fell swoop, the Christian world was cleft in twain. No longer would Rome be able to raise great armies from its subject nations to crush heresies wherever the Papal finger pointed. There was no longer just one big boy on the block. Another had moved in. The mightiest church the world had ever known had been ‘divided’ and ‘conquered’.“But the Reformed Church would not be allowed to remain squeaky clean. The life of Mary’s grandson, James VI, the first...king of both Scotland and England, would be threatened by a plot hatched by ‘witches’ on Halloween, 1590. The celebrated but trumped-up case of the ‘North Berwick Witches’ kick-started over a century of Scottish witch hunts, and proved that your average Presbyterian could be just as vindictive as your average Catholic when it came to fighting Satan's minions. While an equilibrium had been established between the two great Christian powers, neither can yet lay claim to being the saintliest, and each still has that heavy cross of guilt to bear. Another perfect doublecross, perhaps?” (Rosslyn Chapel Revisited)