As a Mormon, I’ve found that most people are somewhat curious about my religion. Every now and then, however, an intrepid soul will ask what it’s like to be a member of a colt. By now, my knee-jerk reaction is defensive, almost robotically explaining that Mormonism may have some unique ideas, but it is no colt.
The question of whether I am a member of a colt confused me for years. So I began to do some research on the subject.
Before I tell you what I’ve learned, I have to get this off my chest: Unlike many of my peers as a youth, I was never drawn to or interested in horses, a trait or defect that continues to this day and has nothing to do with my faith. The reason I mention that is it has made this “colt member” epithet all the more distressing.
I began to study the issue. I knew that horses were mentioned in the Book of Mormon and that some controversy surrounds the issue – but I’ve read the book many times and I can say with certainty that there is absolutely no colt in that book.
I turned to the Bible where I was surprised to find seventeen instances of the word “colt.” Now I was getting somewhere.
Maybe being a member of a colt isn’t such a bad thing, I wondered. It’s in the Bible.
Right, Josh, but so is the devil, I countered.
Upon closer examination of the seventeen biblical verses mentioning colts I was left mystified, especially after reading this passage in Genesis 32:15 –
Thirty milch camels with their colts, forty kine, and ten bulls, twenty she asses, and ten foals.
Google searches also turned up little to nothing on colt membership —
I was more confused than ever.
Last week, the question again resurfaced. It was asked so sincerely by someone I respect, without any hint of snark, that I let down my guard, frankly admitting to him that I was still grappling with the issue. After our conversation, I realized I had not done enough to understand what it truly means to be a member of a colt. I decided right then and there to confront the issue head on.
To continue listening, please turn to “Side B” of this audio cassette recording. You may have to rewind to the beginning of Side B. This side is longer to preserve continuity.