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2 Nephi 19
For the people turneth not unto him that smiteth them, neither do they seek the Lord of Hosts.
2 Nephi 19:13 Precept #1
Turn to the Savior as a child turns to its father.
Do you ignore the Lord when He tries to call you back to Him?
The ancient, he is the head; and the prophet that teacheth lies, he is the tail.
For the leaders of this people cause them to err; and they that are led of them are destroyed.
2 Nephi 19:15-16 Precept #2
Be honest in all you do and lead others to truth. Don’t teach lies and beware of following those who do.
What truth have you shared with someone recently? Are you aware of any falsehoods you have been told?
Therefore the Lord shall have no joy in their young men, neither shall have mercy on their fatherless and widows; for every one of them is a hypocrite and an evildoer, and every mouth speaketh folly. For all this his anger is not turned away, but his hand is stretched out still.
2 Nephi 19:17 Precept #3
Don’t be a hypocrite or an evildoer.
Are you aware of the hypocrisies within you? Do you know how to get rid of them?
For wickedness burneth as the fire; it shall devour the briers and thorns, and shall kindle in the thickets of the forests, and they shall mount up like the lifting up of smoke.
2 Nephi 19:18 Precept #4
Don’t let wickedness consume you.
Are you free from sin? Or does it drive you on to continue as you are doing? Do you let the Savior put the fire out?
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I remember my first truly sacred experience when I was 12 years old. The next was somewhere around 14. My teenage years after that - after beginning a life-long study of the LDS canon of scripture - was chalked full of sacred experience after sacred experience which have developed in me a love for the Gospel of Jesus Christ and a devotion to His teachings as taught in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Because of those experiences as a young man I can say for sure that Jesus Christ lives today and is the Son of the Living God. He atoned for me and has "redeemed my soul from hell."
It was in those years that I learned for myself that the Book of Mormon is the true word of God. That came to be a huge social battle for one young as I was growing up in the Bible belt. I spent those years trying to live my life in such a way that people would know that I was a follower of Christ only to find out after years of hanging out with my friends that none of them believed I was Christian. This was devestating to me, a young man simply trying to show a good example as a follower of Christ. I felt like I had failed. It was only after serving my two year mission for the LDS Church that I realized the reason for their opinion was simply because our definition of what it meant to be Christian was drastically different. For me it had been about following Christ and living His teachings. For them it was whether or not my beliefs fell within their narrowly defined window of what they believed about God and Jesus Christ. I realize now that I was doomed to fail from the beginning!
It was in those years while I was trying to show people that I was a follower of Christ - facing opposition from friend, minister, and teacher alike - that I began studying the scriptures not just to understand His Gospel, but to come to understand answers to the challenges I was being presented with. In short I became as much of a Mormon apologist as a teenage boy with little education could ever become. But I at least had the scriptures and and the guidance of truly devoted and inspired friends and teachers -
and that was all I needed.
It is this pattern of questioning and searching for answers which has informed all of my scripture study and learning over the years of my life since then. My research and understanding of the Gospel, the Church, The Book of Mormon, and Joseph Smith have all grown and expanded because of that constant and consistent devotion to studying. And they will all continue to do so - for the knowledge of God is infinite and there is no way in the life to learn it all.
This blog is an outlet for all I have learned and considered over the years of my Gospel study. I have found - as many people who have come to know the teachings of Christ the way I have - that when the Word is a part of one's soul he or she cannot escape the desire to share It. So share it I do. There are imperfections and missing pieces in what I write, but all in all I truly feel the Lord has blessed me with the one thing I have desired more than almost anything else: a well rounded understanding of His doctrine and truth as He has given to us at this point. Please forgive my imperfections for this blog is as much about improving myself and my own knowledge and faith in God and Christ as it is for helping anyone else do the same.
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