"Wo unto them that turn aside the just for a thing of naught and revile against that which is good, and say that it is of no worth! For the day shall come that the Lord God will speedily visit the inhabitants of the earth; and in that day that they are fully ripe in iniquity they shall perish. But behold, if the inhabitants of the earth shall repent of their wickedness and abominations they shall not be destroyed, saith the Lord of Hosts."
Nephi warns against "turning aside the just for a thing of naught." A "thing of naught" means something without value. To "turn aside" is to leave or move away from. So he is telling you to be careful to not walk away from the truth being taught by a "just" or true source, and instead follow after something of no value.
This rejection of a true messenger and following after a false one inevitably results in "reviling that which is good." When you reject the truth you normally have to deal with a troubled conscious. The way to calm it is to "revile against" the thing you have rejected. Not only do people "revile against" the message, but they go on to "say that it is of no worth!"
Think about the general reception given to the Lord's messengers throughout scripture. They are always the object of criticism and reviling. Nephi is describing a syndrome here which always attaches to the true message and true messenger. They aren't valued, but thought "a thing of naught." The argument is always: "If what they had to say were important, it would come from someone more important." Content is ignored in favor of status.
Now the Lord allows this to go on and always has. But, as Nephi reminds us, there does come a time when the limit has been reached. When the limit has been reached, the end "will speedily visit the inhabitants of the earth." That is, when the time has come, the turn will be so swift that they cannot repent any longer. Judgment will overtake them too quickly.
The moment when they have reached the limit is described by Nephi as "fully ripe in iniquity." That means they will no longer even listen to the truth. They have completely closed minds. It would do no good to extend them further opportunity, because they will not take any advantage of it.
So they are scheduled for destruction.
BUT, Nephi reminds us, they can repent. If they will change their minds and come to Christ, He will forgive them and heal them. If they repent, they will be preserved from the destruction. However, as has already become clear, their destruction is due to the fact they are "fully ripe." So although repentance remains theoretically possible, and the Lord will accept even late return to Him, the offenders are committed to their offense. They are not likely to take advantage of the opportunity.
How humble it is for the Lord to be willing to accept the reluctant, tardy and slow to repent. Nevertheless, He is willing to accept even them. He suffered for all, and will redeem as many as will come to Him. Initially, He won't destroy them with the wicked. Ultimately the outcome will depend upon how committed they are to the process of repentance. For to repent is to come to Him. They decide if His open arms will be where they finally embrace Him; of if they will stand afar off and think it too hard to surrender their sins and go further.
I would say your timing on this is impeccable - I just shut down a Facebook contact ("faithful" member of the Church who has a son on a mission) who could not endure sound doctrine and has brought "railing accusations" against me for holding to clear, supportable doctrinal positions.ReplyDelete
So the persecution begins in the Church of those few that seek to diligently hold the iron rod and operate by the Holy Spirit, by those who are learned and wise.
It will be an interesting chapter in our Church history - and one that will play out just as our Book of Mormon indicates in Helaman and 3rd Nephi (the amount of dualism in scripture is shocking as I find my eyes opened to it).
People such as yourself who find themselves at the point of the lightning rod may well find their lives and social standing in jeopardy - as David Christenson has pointed out.
"For the day shall come that the Lord God will speedily visit the inhabitants of the earth; and in that day that they are fully ripe in iniquity they shall perish. But behold, if the inhabitants of the earth shall repent of their wickedness and abominations they shall not be destroyed, saith the Lord of Hosts."ReplyDelete
This ties nicely into Habakkuk 3:3-6, Isaiah 13:13 and other Old Testament scriptures I have spoken of before; and it is comforting to remember Obadiah 1:17 "But on Mount Zion will be those who have escaped--it will be a sanctuary--and the House of Jacob will recover what is rightfully theirs."
(Of import to me is the "on Mount Zion" and it's various meanings).
This blog is such a blessing to my wife and I. I comment on and off, but I watch faithfully. Why do I do this?ReplyDelete
Because my Heart aches for the Truth, and to know from Him who all Truth comes from.
I find your counsel to not share unless you Know that the Message you share is right to be very wise. I see how in my zest I have placed Stumbling blocks in the way of Loved ones I wanted to help. It pains me. I know now I MUST have the Truth from the Source. Christ is the Only Way.
Again, what always comforts me about a true messenger is they point you to Christ, and not to themselves.
"A man may be saved, after the judgment, in the terrestrial kingdom, or in theReplyDelete
telestial kingdom, but he can never see the celestial kingdom of God, without
being born of water and the Spirit. He may receive a glory like unto the moon, or
a star, but he can never come unto Mount Zion, and unto the city of the living
God, the heavenly Jerusalem, and to an innumerable company of angels; to the
general assembly and Church of the Firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to
God the judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect, and to Jesus the
Mediator of the new covenant, unless he becomes as a little child, and
is taught by the Spirit of God. Wherefore, we again say, SEARCH THE
REVELATIONS OF GOD; study the prophecies, and rejoice that God grants unto
the world Seers and Prophets. They are they who saw the mysteries of godliness;
they saw the flood before it came; they saw angels ascending and descending
upon a ladder that reached from earth to heaven;... And, fellow sojourners upon
earth, it is your privilege to purify yourselves and come up to the same glory, and
see for yourselves, and know for yourselves. Ask, and it shall be given you; seek
and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you." (Joseph Smith Aug
1832; Teachings, p.12-13; HC 1:282-284.)
DKD, what about Joseph and especially Hyrum's teaching about the moon being the archtype of the terrestrial kingdom because it waxes and wanes? This implies progression and regression from this kingdom. You leave a kingdom based on 'saving justice' for one based on either (1) fear associated with the law of the jungle in a lone and dreary world; or (2) based on the law of sacrifice -- where something of value to you is given up for something of greater value to/for another.ReplyDelete
Where does one covenant to obey the law of sacrifice? What does that covenant produce?