Sunday, September 18, 2016

The Warning of Fourth Nephi

While it’s a recurring theme throughout the Book of Mormon, Fourth Nephi stands as a stark witness to the fact anyone can fall from grace. Anyone. Doesn’t matter how “far along” the path you are or how long you’ve been eating the fruit of the tree Lehi saw, if you become complacent, you can fall. Or perhaps in our world… you will.

The scope of the Book of Mormon applies to societies and individuals. Read at the personal level, you see how by degrees people fade or fall away. The divergence is small to begin with, barely noticeable even. Yet it grows over time not only in the amount of separation caused by the different tracks, but the rate divergence increases over time too, like a hyperbolic arc.

For a long time, things appear normal, then BOOM! In an instant as it were the differences manifest in behavior which surprises most.

I think that principle can be applied to not only our testimonies, but to relationships. They need to be fed constantly. They need to be treated like the special things they are every day. It doesn’t take much, but it takes some effort, a little each day.

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Melting with Fervent Heat

There are some interesting comments which both the Savior and Mormon make about His appearance to these Nephites. One was an “ahah” moment for me, the other is a perplexing question for which I have no answer yet.

The “ahah” moment is when Mormon mentions the Savior spent three days teaching the Nephites in 3 Nephi 26:13. My original understanding was the Savior made a much shorter visit: just two days. The first day when He appears to the temple and then the second day when He appears to the multitude. But now, I think His second appearance was the one which lasted three days. Mormon says He appeared to them often after that too.

This longer visit gives Him the time to expound all things to the people. How cool would it be to have been taught by Jesus about the history of mankind upon the Earth? Yet, the Spirit whispers to me to not be envious of them. He gave them what they needed. In a manner appropriate to our time and circumstances, He will give us all we need.

As I continue to attend the temple, I marvel at how prominent the Savior is in all that happens there. While He is Lord of all, in that He created all things for the Father, He is also my Lord: my personal Savior. Just as Heavenly Father, though all the universe is His and an innumerable host are all His children… still He knows me personally.

I’ll finish this post with a question: what is the fervent heat mentioned in verse 3 of the same chapter? I don’t know.