Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Believest thou the words which I shall speak? 2


Yea, Lord, I know that thou speakest the truth, for thou art a God of truth, and canst not lie. 

And again, verily I say unto you, O inhabitants of the earth: I the Lord am willing to make these things known unto all flesh;

For I am no respecter of persons…. 

How many really believe that the Lord is no respecter of persons.  Or better, how many really have faith that the Lord is no respecter of persons? 

Perhaps thou shalt say:
 This man is special; he was visited when he was 14, or 15.  These things are reserved for only a select few.  I have had not special experiences, so I must not be special.
Or perhaps thou shalt say:

Aunt Betty was love incarnate.  She worked tirelessly her whole life to feed the poor and every week in the temple, she took her own names through. She had scripture study each night, magnified all her callings, paid a full tithe, cured cancer and won the Nobel peace prize.  I remember as she lay dying, she told me not to worry, that she would finally get to see the face of the Savior, and she was ready. If she did not, how can I?

Is this not a form of unbelief?  Are you not making your own judgment, based on your own limited wisdom and knowledge that either Aunt Betty SHOULD have obtained the heavenly gift, OR that you would have to do MORE (not different) that she did?  Do you do this on a smaller scale?

If these things seem to clash, then what one do you trust?  In what idea have you placed your faith? 

Do you have faith in the perceived discrepancies or in the promise that the Lord is no respecter of persons? 

Do you know God cannot lie?

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Believest thou the words which I shall speak?

In lectures on faith Lecture Third we read:

Let us here observe, that three things are necessary in order that any rational and intelligent being may exercise faith in God unto life and salvation.

First, the idea that he actually exists. 

…it was that the knowledge of the existence of God came into the world, and by what means the first thoughts were suggested to the minds of men that such a Being did actually exist; and that it was by reason of the knowledge of his existence that there was a foundation laid for the exercise of faith in him, as the only Being in whom faith could center for life and salvation; for faith could not center in a Being of whose existence we have no idea, because the idea of his existence in the first instance is essential to the exercise of faith in him. Romans 10:14: "How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?" (or one sent to tell them?) So, then, faith comes by hearing the word of God

So, for all of us, we have obtained the first thing necessary in order to exercise faith in God unto life and salvation. We have heard the word of God, and it has awoken in us a desire to have a productive and fruitful faith. Necessary to this is:

Secondly, a correct idea of his character, perfections, and attributes.

The faith we are trying to produce is unto life and salvation. It is the kind of faith that brings angels to appear unto the children of men., that they may in all things be prepared to converse with the Lord through the veil. for it is by faith that miracles are wrought; and it is by faith that angels appear and minister unto men; wherefore, if these things have ceased wo be unto the children of men,The central character or attribute to build this foundational faith on is simply that God cannot lie.

In Ether 3 we read that the brother of Jared, having knocked, was once again brought to the veil, wherein the Lord parts the veil and asks a question. Then the brother of Jared, having conversed with the Lord though the veil says, “Lord, show thyself unto me”

And the Lord said unto him: Believest thou the words which I shall speak?
And he answered: Yea, Lord, I know that thou speakest the truth, for thou art a God of truth, and canst not lie. And when he had said these words, behold, the Lord showed himself unto him, and said: Because thou knowest these things ye are redeemed from the fall; therefore ye are brought back into my presence; therefore I show myself unto you.
Now because of the knowledge of the brother of Jared he could not be kept from beholding within the veil

The Lord and Moroni specifically say that it is this knowledge that brings him back into the presence of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, the Father and the Son.

We have a further witness of this faith through Enos: 

.. there came a voice unto me, saying: Enos, thy sins are forgiven thee, and thou shalt be blessed. And I, Enos, knew that God could not lie; wherefore, my guilt was swept away. 

Ether 3 and 4 blend together. In the original Book of Mormon there was no chapter break at all there, chapter two starts where our chapter five starts now. There is a continuous flow from chapters three to four of thought and it is all part of Moroni’s aside.

And as such I want to jump to chapter 4, but I ask you, Believest thou the words which Christ shall speak? 

And in that day that (YOU) shall exercise faith in me, saith the Lord, even as the brother of Jared did, that (YOU) may become sanctified in me, then will I manifest unto (YOU) the things which the brother of Jared saw, even to the unfolding unto (YOU) all my revelations, saith Jesus Christ, the Son of God, the Father of the heavens and of the earth, and all things that in them are.
Come unto me, O ye Gentiles (YOU), and I will show unto you the greater things, the knowledge which is hid up because of unbelief.

The brother of Jared's faith in the Lord was knowing the correct character or attribute that God cannot lie. when you know that, the Lord will open the heavens:

for (saith Jesus Christ)I am he who speaketh. And at my command the heavens are opened and are shut 

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Understanding this blog

I thought a lot about this blog this weekend.  I am often torn between conflicting thoughts concerning what should be said and what should be kept close.  I am a fool, if nothing else, and I have no answers to my dilemma. 

 Shall I:

talk of Christ,  rejoice in Christ,  preach of Christ,  prophesy of Christ, and  write according to the prophecies, that my children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.

and let your  preaching be the  warning voice, every man to his neighbor, in mildness and in  meekness.

it becometh every man who hath been warned to warn his neighbor.

Yet in my past, I have borne testimony of things I know now not to be true.  It is a terrible thing to contemplate.  I fear doing so again, considering how consistently I am learning more and more. 

And the Spirit shall be given unto you by the prayer of faith; and if ye receive not the Spirit ye shall not teach.

I do not want to deny the things that sing in my heart and cause me to rejoice either.  I do not want to fail my neighbor.  I want to testify of my King. 

My lips have not been purged by an angel with a live coal in his hand.  I have no commission from Christ.  Both the thought to write and to not write cause me to tremble.  So I am going to write, but I ask you to understand that my understanding is my own.  I am learning.

Here then is my statement:

I am nothing.  I have no earthly or heavenly credentials. Let my words stand or fail on their own. My only hope is that some may find they point to Christ.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Times of the Gentiles

And they came down and went forth upon the face of the earth; and the first came and  stood before my father, and gave unto him a book,and bade him that he should read.

...the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ.
And the Spirit giveth light to every man that cometh into the world; and the Spirit enlighteneth every man through the world, that hearkeneth to the voice of the Spirit.
And every one that hearkeneth to the voice of the Spirit cometh unto God, even the Father.
And the Father  teacheth him of the covenant which he has renewed and confirmed upon you, which is confirmed upon you for your sakes, and not for your sakes only, but for the sake of the whole world.
(And even so I have sent mine everlasting covenant into the world, to be a light to the world, and to be a standard for my people, and for the Gentiles to seek to it, and to be a messenger before my face to prepare the way before me.Wherefore, come ye unto it, and with him that cometh I will reason as with men in days of old, and I will show unto you my strong reasoning.)
And the whole world lieth in sin, and groaneth under darkness and under the bondage of sin.
And by this you may know the righteous from the wicked, and that the whole world groaneth under sin and darkness even now.
And your minds in times past have been darkened because of unbelief, and because you have treated lightly the things you have received—

Hearken, O ye people of my church, to whom the kingdom has been given; hearken ye and give ear to him who laid the foundation of the earth, who made the heavens and all the hosts thereof, and by whom all things were made which live, and move, and have a being.
And again I say, hearken unto my voice, lest death shall overtake you; in an hour when ye think not the summer shall be past, and the harvest ended, and your souls not saved.
Listen to him who is the advocate with the Father, who is pleading your cause before him—

when the times of the Gentiles is come in, a light shall break forth among them that sit in darkness, and it shall be the fulness of my gospel;
But they receive it not; for they perceive not the light, and they turn their hearts from me because of the precepts of men.
(Yea, wo be unto him that hearkeneth unto the precepts of men, and denieth the power of God, and the gift of the Holy Ghost!
Cursed is he that putteth his trust in man, or maketh flesh his arm, or shall hearken unto the precepts of men, save their precepts shall be given by the power of the Holy Ghost. )
And in that generation shall the times of the Gentiles be fulfilled.

And there shall be men standing in that generation, that shall not pass until they shall see an overflowing scourge; for a desolating sickness shall cover the land.
But my disciples shall stand in holy places, and shall not be moved; but among the wicked, men shall lift up their voices and curse God and die.

And it came to pass that when my father had read and seen many great and marvelous things, he did exclaim many things unto the Lord; such as: Great and marvelous are thy works, O Lord God Almighty! Thy throne is high in the heavens, and thy power, and goodness, and mercy are over all the inhabitants of the earth; and, because thou art merciful, thou wilt not suffer those who come unto thee that they shall perish!