Tag Archives: prophet

Leading up to Christmas – Day 22

<– Day 21                                                    Day 23 –>

3 Nephi 1:11

“And it came to pass that he went out and bowed himself down upon the earth, and cried mightily to his God in behalf of his people, yea, those who were about to be destroyed because of their faith in the tradition of their fathers.”

The prophet Nephi knew the sign would be given as Samuel said.  But, obviously, he didn’t know if lives would be lost before it happened.  Do we expect a true prophet of God to know everything?  I think they must, also, be on a ‘need to know’ basis with God.  Prophets aren’t perfect, either, and maybe their faith also needs to be exercised.  I don’t know if that would be for their benefit or ours though?  Nephi apparently knew the time for the sign was close enough that all that was left to do was pray in behalf of the believers.  Heavenly Father expects us to ask for what we need.  To “cry mightily” sounds like pleading to me.  If I put myself in Nephi’s place I could think of a couple different things I could ask Heavenly Father for in this desperate time.  My first thought is to pray for their safety.  I could ask Him to soften the hearts of the wicked so they’ll put off the death deadline until Christ comes.  I would ask if there is something else I could do to change their minds.  I might also pray that the righteous be comforted and strengthened no matter what happens.  I could plead for the sign to be given tonight.  I know I would pray that all lives would be spared but that His will be done.  I think it is interesting that, in the previous verse, he called the wicked “his people”; here it is the righteous.  We love who we serve.  It doesn’t matter whether they listen to us or not.  A couple days ago, I talked about “tradition” as if it were something negative; or at least something less than righteous.  Traditions can be good, bad or somewhere in between.  The Christmas season is full of cultural and family traditions.  As we establish our family traditions we want them to reinforce and promote faith in God and Jesus Christ.  Santa Clause, reindeer and elves are not evil.  But remember to teach the meaning of Christmas.  Otherwise, children might think it’s the receiving (or the sugar), instead of the giving, that makes them so happy.  God gave us His Son and Jesus gave His life for us to be happy.

Christmas Treats
Christmas Treats

Leading up to Christmas – Day 20

<– Day 19                                               Day 21 –>

3 Nephi 1:9

“Now it came to pass that there was a day set apart by the unbelievers, that all those who believed in those traditions should be put to death except the sign should come to pass, which had been given by Samuel the prophet.”

Wow!  So, the unbelievers were SO annoyed by the believers by now that they want to KILL them?  Why not just laugh in their faces if the sign doesn’t come?  The thing is, Satan is getting desperate.  He only has a few more hours before the sign is given.  Once the sign is given, everyone will know that Christ has come and even the unbelievers will repent.  Satan will lose his grasp on a lot of people.  If we repent of our sins, we belong to Christ’s family.  This is no small community.  If there were thousands of believers then there had to have been at least that many unbelievers to be convinced that they could over-power the others.  It is interesting, too, that the unbelievers call the prophecy a “tradition”.  I think that’s another way that we can convince ourselves that something is not from God.  If Satan can convince us to become apathetic or cavalier about the Word of God, he doesn’t have to work as hard for our time.  Then he can spend his time and effort on the believers.  But, if he can stir up the unbelievers to the point where they kill a believer, they’ve shortened his work.  Satan cannot claim the soul of the believer who has lost his life.  But he certainly has a firmer grasp on the soul of the person who took the life of another human being.  The more severe the sin, the harder it is to repent of it.  Maybe, if I start thinking of the Bible (Old or New Testament) as a book full of “stories” or “traditions”, that is an early warning sign that I’m heading down the wrong path.  The nice thing about electronic media is that I don’t have to sound like a broken record. (I wonder if people under 30 know what that sounds like?)  Anyway, click here for my opinion on recognizing truth: Day 13.