Except Men Shall Have Charity They Cannot Inherit the Father’s Mansions

Thinking that he would have no more occasion to add to the Gold Plates, the prophet Moroni records a prayer to the Lord and bids farewell to his readers.

“…I…remember that thou hast said that thou hast prepared a house for man, yea, even among the mansions of thy Father, in which man might have a more excellent hope; wherefore man must hope, or he cannot receive an inheritance in the place which thou hast prepared. And again, I remember that thou hast said that thou hast loved the world, even unto the laying down of thy life for the world, that thou mightest take it again to prepare a place for the children of men. And now I know this love which thou hast had for the children of men is charity; wherefore, except men shall have charity they cannot inherit that place which thou hast prepared in the mansions of thy Father. Wherefore, I know by this thing which thou hast said, that if the Gentiles have not charity, because of our weakness, that thou wilt prove them, and take away their talent, yea, even that which they have received, and give unto them who shall have more abundantly.” (Ether 12:32-35)

“And it came to pass that I prayed unto the Lord that he would give unto the Gentiles grace, that they might have charity. And it came to pass that the Lord said unto me: If they have not charity it mattereth not unto thee, thou hast been faithful; wherefore thy garments shall be made clean. And because thou hast seen thy weakness thou shalt be made strong, even unto the sitting down in the place which I have prepared in the mansions of my Father.” (Ether 12:36-37)

“And now I, Moroni bid farewell unto the Gentiles, yea, and also unto my brethren whom I love, until we shall meet before the judgment seat of Christ, where all men shall know that my garments are not spotted with your blood. And then shall ye know that I have seen Jesus, and that he hath talked with me face to face in plain humility, even as a man telleth another in mine own language, concerning these things: And only a few have I written, because of my weakness in writing. And now I would commend you to seek this Jesus of whom the prophets and apostles have written, that the grace of God the Father, and also the Lord Jesus Christ, and the Holy Ghost, which beareth record of them, may be abide in you forever. Amen.” (Ether 12:38-41)

Questions:

-What is the sacrifice that God requires of his children now that the ancient practice of animal sacrifice, as prescribed in the law of Moses, has been done away?

-Is pride, and distain for others, an easy thing to let go of in order to offer a broken heart and a contrite spirit to the Lord?

-Would there be any hope for humanity if Christ chose to condemn us rather than doing all in His power to emphasize the good in us and lift us?

-Will a person ever be right with the Lord if they don’t take on His name and reflect His pure love in the way they live with and view others?

Fools Mock, But They Shall Mourn

The Nephite prophet, Moroni, speaks to the Lord about the record he and the earlier Nephite prophets had made (that would later be translated as the Book of Mormon).

“…Lord…when we write we behold our weakness and stumble because of the placing of our words; and I fear lest the Gentiles shall mock at our words. And when I had said this, the Lord spake unto me, saying: Fools mock, but they shall mourn; and my grace is sufficient for the meek, that they shall take no advantage of your weakness; And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.” (Ether 12:23,25-27)

Questions:

-Will anyone who does not humbly seek an answer from God about the truth of the Book of Mormon ever now the truth regarding the matter?

Ye Receive No Witness Until after the Trial of Your Faith

God expects his children to seek after Him in faith during this mortal life. One comes to know God through the concerted exercise of faith and not by waiting for God to reveal himself separate from this faith in action.

“…Faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith…For if there be no faith among the children of men God can do no miracle among them…And neither at any time hath any wrought miracles until after their faith; wherefore they first believed in the Son of God.” (Ether 11:6,12,18)

Questions:

-Will those who learn to earnestly seek God’s influence in this life, through faith, be in a natural position in the eternities to continue to learn from God?

Hope Cometh of Faith

Faith in God, and the hope it fosters, anchors a person’s soul — where it needs to be — in preparation for the eternities.

“…By faith are all things fulfilled—wherefore, whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even a place at the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men, which would make them sure and steadfast, always abounding in good works, being led to glorify God.” (Ether 12:4)

Questions:

-How many have a mindset where their deepest motivations come from a desire to glorify God?

-Is it possible to develop that kind of motivation without a correct understanding who God is and a correct understanding of His relationship to the human family?

-Does worthily and faithfully participating in the holy ordinances, administered in His temples, light this kind of eternal flame in the center of one’s being?

When Ye Shall See These Things Come Among You…Awake to a Sense of Your Awful Situation

One of the most malignant Satanic forces in the world, because of its ability to cause widespread destruction in a society or nation, is groups of people who mutually seek power and gain in secret and without constraint—even to the point of murdering those who oppose them or stand in the way of their ambitions.

“…A secret combination…is most abominable and wicked above all, in the sight of God; for the Lord worketh not in secret combinations, neither doth he will that man should shed blood, but in all things hath forbidden it, from the beginning of man…And whatsoever nation shall uphold such secret combinations, to get power and gain, until they shall spread over the nation, behold, they shall be destroyed; for the Lord will not suffer that the blood of his saints, which shall be shed by them, shall always cry unto him from the ground for vengeance upon them and yet he avenge them not. Wherefore, O ye Gentiles, it is wisdom in God that these things should be shown unto you, that thereby ye may repent of your sins, and suffer not that these murderous combinations shall get above you, which are built up to get power and gain—and the work, yea even the work of destruction come upon you, yea, even the sword of the justice of the Eternal God shall fall upon you, to your overthrow and destruction if ye shall suffer these things to be.” (Ether 8:22-23)

“Wherefore, the Lord commandeth you, when ye shall see these things come among you that ye shall awake to a sense of your awful situation, because of this secret combination which shall be among you; or wo be unto it, because of the blood of them who have been slain; for they cry from the dust for vengeance upon it, and also upon those who built it up. For it cometh to pass that whoso buildeth it up seeketh to overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries; and it bringeth to pass the destruction of all people, for it is built up by the devil, who is the father of all lies; even that same liar who beguiled our first parents, yea, even that same liar who hath caused man to commit murder from the beginning; who hath hardened the hearts of men that they have murdered the prophets, and stoned them, and cast them out from the beginning. Wherefore, I, Moroni, am commanded to write these things that evil may be done away, and that the time may come that Satan may have no power upon the hearts of the children of men, but that they may be persuaded to do good continually, that they may come unto the fountain of all righteousness and be saved.” (Ether 8:24-26)

Questions:

-Given their unbridled desire for gain and dominion over others, do the people who form secret combinations inevitably seek to control the highest levels of government power?

-What would be the telltale signs that these secret groups had become part of the governmental sphere?

-Why will faithful members of the Church of Jesus Christ (saints) run afoul of these groups’ machinations? How will the Lord respond when His saints begin to be murdered by these groups?

Ye Shall See Me, and We Shall Stand before God at the Last Day

The prophet Moroni foresees that three individuals would receive a special witness from God that the Gold Plates are a true record written by ancient American prophets, and that Joseph Smith received divine authority and power from God to translate the Gold Plates as what is now known as the Book of Mormon. The testimony of these three special witnesses can be read here: Testimony of Three Witnesses (churchofjesuschrist.org)

“…In the mouth of three witnesses shall these things be established; and the testimony of three, and this work, in the which shall be shown forth the power of God, and also his word, of which the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost bear record—and all this shall stand as a testimony against the world at the last day. And if it so be that they repent and come unto the Father in the name of Jesus, they shall be received into the kingdom of God. And now, if I have no authority for these things, judge ye; for ye shall know that I have authority when ye shall see me, and we shall stand before God at the last day. Amen.” (Ether 5:4-6)

Questions:

-Are you willing to make a clear judgment (in line with Moroni’s challenge) about the truth of the Book of Mormon as God’s word and work? What is the role of the Holy Ghost in helping you make that judgment?

For a free copy of the Book of Mormon go to https://www.comeuntochrist.org/site/book-of-mormon

When Ye See These Things, Ye Shall Know That the Time is at Hand

The Lord declares that He is prepared to give greater light and knowledge to those who will hear His voice and come unto Him. The coming forth of the Book of Mormon text is a sign that the apocalyptic events as seen in John’s revelation (found in the second half of the book of Revelation in the New Testament) are at hand.  

“Come unto me, O ye Gentiles, and I will show unto you the great things, the knowledge that is hid up because of unbelief. Come unto me, O ye house of Israel, and it shall be made manifest unto you how greater things the Father hath laid up for you, from the foundation of the world; and it hath not come unto you, because of unbelief. Behold, when ye shall rend that veil of unbelief which doth cause you to remain in your awful state of wickedness, and hardness of heart, and blindness of mind, then shall the great and marvelous things which have been hid up from the foundation of the world from you—yea, when ye shall call upon the Father in my name, with a broken heart and a contrite spirit, then shall ye know that the Father hath remembered the covenant which he made unto your fathers, O house of Israel. And then shall my revelations which I have caused to be written by my servant John be unfolded in the eyes of all the people. Remember, when ye see these things, ye shall know that the time is at hand that they shall be made manifest in very deed. Therefore, when ye shall receive this record ye may know that the work of the Father has commenced upon all the face of the land. Therefore, repent all ye ends of the earth, and come unto me and believe in my gospel, and be baptized in my name; for he that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be damned; and signs shall follow them that believe in my name. And blessed is he that is found faithful unto my name at the last day, for he shall be lifted up to dwell in the kingdom prepared for him from the foundation of the world. And behold it is I that hath spoken it.” (Ether 4:13-19)

Questions:

-How many are in a place spiritually where they are willing to call upon the Father, in the name of Christ, with a broken heart and a contrite spirit?

-Will the numbers who are prepared to humbly seek God increase as the events described in John’s Apocalypse begin to unfold?

For a free copy of the Book of Mormon go to https://www.ComeUntoChrist.org/site/book-of-mormon

Ye Shall Know That It Is I That Speaketh at the Last Day

The Lord, Jesus Christ, testifies of the truth of the Book of Mormon as His word and His voice:

“…He that will contend against the word of the Lord, let him be accursed; and he that shall deny these things, let him be accursed; for unto them will I show no greater things, saith Jesus Christ; for I am he who speaketh. And at my command the heavens are opened and are shut; and at my word the earth shall shake; and at my command the inhabitants thereof shall pass away, even so as by fire. And he that believeth not my words believeth not my disciples; and if it so be that I do not speak, judge ye; for ye shall know that it is I that speaketh, at the last day. But he that believeth these things which I have spoken, him will I visit with the manifestations of my Spirit, and he shall know and bear record. For because of my Spirit he shall know that these things are true, for it persuadeth men to do good. And whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do good is of me; for good cometh of none save it be of me. I am the same that leadeth men to all good; he that will not believe my words will not believe me—that I am; and he that will not believe me will not believe the Father who sent me. For behold, I am the Father, I am the light, and the life, and the truth of the world.” (Ether 4:8-12)

Questions:

-Why is the person described above, to whom God will give no additional revelations, in a cursed state?

-What are your feelings about the Lord’s voice and testimony above?

For a free copy of the Book of Mormon go to https://www.ComeUntoChrist.org/site/book-of-mormon

There Never Were Greater Things Made Manifest

The brother of Jared was the first prophet among the Jaredite civilization that existed in the Americas prior to 600 B.C. He recorded a revelation from the Lord that was translated by the Nephite king, Mosiah, and included in the sealed portion of the Gold Plates that the prophet Joseph Smith was commanded by God not to translate (the unsealed portion of the Gold Plates that was translated became the Book of Mormon).

The Nephite prophet Moroni, who abridged the record of the Jaredites after it was translated, testifies that the power, meaning, and contents of the Lord’s revelation to the brother of Jared were as great as any other revelation received by a human being.

“Behold, I have written upon these plates the very things which the brother of Jared saw; and there never were greater things made manifest than those which were made manifest unto the brother of Jared. Wherefore the Lord hath commanded me to write them; and I have written them. And he commanded me that I should seal them up…For the Lord said unto me: They shall not go forth unto the Gentiles until the day that they shall repent of their iniquity, and become clean before the Lord. And in that day that they shall exercise faith in me, saith the Lord, even as the brother of Jared did, that they may become sanctified in me, then will I manifest unto them the things which the brother of Jared saw, even to the unfolding unto them 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.” (Ether 4:4-7)

Questions:

-Who is Moroni referring to when he uses the word “Gentiles”?

-Could a revelation as great as that which the brother of Jared received be accurately captured by an earthly language?

For a free copy of the Book of Mormon please go to https://www.ComeUntoChrist.org/site/book-of-mormon

All Men Were Created in the Beginning after My Own Image

In seeking a way to cross the ocean in enclosed barges, the brother of Jared, prays to the Lord and asks that He would touch a number of clear stones so they could serve as a light source during the ocean journey. In seeking this help from the Lord, he also learns important truths about the nature of God.

“…I know, O Lord, that thou hast all power, and can do whatsoever thou wilt for the benefit of man; therefore touch these stones, O Lord, with thy finger, and prepare them that they shine forth in darkness; and they shall shine forth unto us in the vessels which we have prepared, that we may have light while we shall cross the sea. Behold, O Lord, thou canst do this. We know that thou art able to show forth great power, which looks small unto the understanding of men. And it came to pass that when the brother of Jared had said these words, behold, the Lord stretched forth his hand and touched the stones one by one with his finger. And the veil was taken from off the eyes of the brother of Jared, and he saw the finger of the Lord; and it was as the finger of a man, like unto flesh and blood; and the brother of Jared fell down before the Lord, for he was struck with fear.” (Ether 3:4-6)

“And the Lord saw that the brother of Jared had fallen to the earth; and the Lord said unto him: Arise, why hast thou fallen? And he saith unto the Lord: I saw the finger of the Lord, and I feared lest he should smite me; for I knew not that the Lord had flesh and blood. And the Lord said unto him; Because of thy faith thou hast seen that I shall take upon me flesh and blood; and never has man come before me with such exceeding faith as thou hast; for were it not so ye could not have seen my finger. Sawest thou more than this? And he answered: Nay; 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.” (Ether 3:7-13)

“Behold, I am he who was prepared from the foundation of the world to redeem my people. Behold, I am Jesus Christ. I am the Father and the Son. In me shall all mankind have life, and that eternally, even they who shall believe on my name; and they shall become my sons and daughters. And never have I showed myself unto man whom I have created, for never has man believed in me as thou hast. Seest thou that ye are created after mine own image? Yea, even all men were created in the beginning after mine own image. Behold, this body, which ye now behold, is the body of my spirit; and man have I created after the body of my spirit; and even as I appear unto thee to be in the spirit will I appear unto my people in the flesh.” (Ether 3:14-16)

Questions:

-Do you believe that the human form is not a semi-arbitrary function of some kind of evolutionary force, but is, actually, intentionally patterned by God after the same form He has always taken?