This past Sunday, in Sunday School, the teacher set us a small assignment at the beginning of class. He asked us to take five minutes and write down what we thought were the most important things the Gospel of Jesus Christ asks us to do as members of the Lord’s Church. We were asked to also write down scripture references to support these ideas. I thought I would take the time to share the scriptures I jotted down in those five minutes. Perhaps they will inspire, help, or lift someone in the audience.
The first thing that came to mind is what we call in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints the “Four-Fold Mission of the Church.” The four planks include: Proclaim the Gospel; Perfect the Saints; Redeem the Dead; and Serve the Poor and Needy. An entire book could be written about this Four-Fold Mission statement. The first scriptural reference that came to me, however, is found in The Book of Mormon: Another Testament of Jesus ChristF
I testify that The Book of Mormon is indeed a witness for Christ and was inspired by God. It is a companion scripture to the Bible that proclaims the divinity of Christ. In fact, 3,925 verses in that holy book talk of Jesus Christ, meaning that the Lord’s name is mentioned an average of once every 1.7 verses. It is a clear, direct, and powerful testimony that Jesus is the Son of God, that He died for our sins, that He rose from the dead and showed Himself to humble disciples on multiple continents, that He stands as the Redeemer of mankind, and that His name is the only name by which salvation comes.
The first verse that came to me that, broadly speaking, supports the Four-Fold Mission detailed above is the following declaration of an ancient Hebrew prophet named Alma. To a group of new converts who desired to enter into a covenant to serve the Lord, Alma said:
“Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light;
“Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life—
“Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you?” (Mosiah 18:8-11).
Bearing each other’s burdens, comforting those who stand in need, taking upon you the name of Christ, and standing as a witness of Jesus at all times, in all things, and in all places – this is the essence of Christian discipleship.
The second scripture I wrote on my list was Matthew 18:21-22:
“Then came Peter to him, and said, Lord, how oft shall my brother sin against me, and I forgive him? till seven times?
“Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven.”
In conjunction with this famous passage, I included Doctrine and Covenants 64:8-11. The Doctrine and Covenants is a compilation of revelations and counsel given to the Lord’s disciples in modern times. Though not as well-known as The Book of Mormon, The Doctrine and Covenants is rich with doctrinal treasures and inspired clarifications that benefit anyone seeking to live more like the Master. The verses in question state:
“My disciples, in days of old, sought occasion against one another and forgave not one another in their hearts; and for this evil they were afflicted and sorely chastened.
“Wherefore, I say unto you, that ye ought to forgive one another; for he that forgiveth not his brother his trespasses standeth condemned before the Lord; for there remaineth in him the greater sin.
“I, the Lord, will forgive whom I will forgive, but of you it is required to forgive all men.”
Have you ever considered that if you don’t forgive another, you stand condemned and that in you lies the greater sin? Having a forgiving heart, then, is one of the chief attributes of a real Christian.
Earlier this year, I wrote an article bearing the simple name “70×7.” I love the doctrine of forgiveness and repentance! As one who has recognized that I fall short on a daily basis, I know that I need forgiveness frequently from my fellow man and from my God. I may be guilty of various things in life, but I’m not guilty of denying anyone forgiveness. I readily forgive others and I quickly apologize and ask for forgiveness when I have done a wrong or hurt someone.
he idea of 70×7 – a chance to repent, change, and do better the next time, and a chance to give others that same opportunity – is indescribably precious to my soul. It would revolutionize the world if Christians would embrace “70×7.”
Next, on my Sunday School assignment, I quoted from the resurrected Redeemer. After appearing to His disciples in the Old World, He appeared to other disciples in the New World – the “other sheep” He had spoken of during His mortal ministry (John 10:16). While there, He repeated His Sermon on the Mount and expounded various teachings, including the following taken from 3 Nephi 27:27:
“[W]hat manner of men ought ye to be? Verily I say unto you, even as I am.”
Being like Christ is what it’s all about. It is the answer to the questions “What should I do?” or “What should I say?” or “What should I think?” in 100% of cases. “What Would Jesus Do?” is more than a pithy slogan on bumper stickers – it’s the injunction of the Master Himself.
The next passage I scribbled on my paper in Sunday School was Luke 18:1, which instructs:
“[M]en ought always to pray, and not to faint.”
It’s a simple statement, but one that contains such power. Prayer is the heart of a sincere Christian life. Prayer allows us to talk to our Heavenly Father and tap into His divine power. Through it, we may bless ourselves, our families, and those around us. In my own life, I have had too many experiences with immediately and specifically answered prayers to deny the reality and power of prayer and the fact that Heavenly Father listens to and loves His children.
The next scriptural passage I cited comes from Moroni 10:32-33. These are essentially the final words of the final prophet who closed the scriptural record that was translated and published as The Book of Mormon. What did this ancient seer want us, his future readers, to know and do? Said he:
“Yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness; and if ye shall deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God.
“And again, if ye by the grace of God are perfect in Christ, and deny not his power, then are ye sanctified in Christ by the grace of God, through the shedding of the blood of Christ, which is in the covenant of the Father unto the remission of your sins, that ye become holy, without spot.”
Wise words that no Christian of any denomination can reject. They point us to Christ. They plead with us to become righteous that we may receive the Savior’s grace and mercy. Jesus has power to give this grace by virtue of His Atonement. We access His grace by entering into covenants and ordinances, by self-sacrifice, and by righteous living. Christ’s mercy may wash away our sins and redeem us, if we will fully and sincerely turn our hearts to Him.
The next verses that I cited involve the importance ordinances. This comes from Doctrine and Covenants 84:19-22:
“And this greater priesthood ministereth the gospel and holdeth the key of the mysteries of the kingdom, even the key of the knowledge of God.
“Therefore, in the ordinances thereof, the power of godliness is manifest.
“And without the ordinances thereof, and the authority of the priesthood, the power of godliness is not manifest unto men in the flesh;
“For without this no man can see the face of God, even the Father, and live.”
Too many Christians deny the importance of ordinances. Yet, the Bible is clear that ordinances are part of the salvation process. The Savior taught, for instance, that no man can get to Heaven unless he enters through the door of baptism (John 3:3-5). The New Testament also makes it clear that the ordinance of baptism, to be efficacious, must not only be performed by proper authority, but must be followed by the giving of the Holy Ghost through the laying on of hands of those holding proper Priesthood authority (Acts 8:14-20). Without these types of sacred ordinances, we cannot access the full power of God and, in the end, we will not return to our Father in Heaven.
To clarify, though it is Christ’s grace that save us because of His atoning redemption for us and His pure goodness is advocating our cause, He requires ordinances. There is order and careful calculation in Heaven. No one sneaks into Heaven; there is a proper door. That door is ordinances, beginning with baptism by proper authority and proceeding along the course outlined by the Lord and His prophets.
In modern times, the Prophet Joseph Smith taught the same doctrine in a simple phrase: “Being born again, comes by the Spirit of God through ordinances” (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 162). Most consider the Prophet to be a charlatan, yet a tree is known by its fruits. A corrupt tree cannot produce good fruit (Luke 6:42-49). The succulent fruit of Joseph Smith’s works has been to lead millions – myself included – to the Savior Jesus Christ. And, in this example, he merely reworded the words of ancient seers relative to the critical place of ordinances in the Gospel Plan.
The final two passages I jotted down deal with a topic often seen as taboo at Church – politics. Then again, it’s not really politics; it’s the Gospel of Jesus Christ, which is the Gospel of Liberty. We cannot, in good faith, divest the religious side of the Gospel from the political. They are both essential parts that make up the whole. As Elder Hans Verlan Andresen once put it:
“There are those who undertake to keep their “politics” completely separated from their “religion.” This is logically impossible for one who accepts the scriptures as the word of God” (Hans Verlan Andersen, The Great and Abominable Church of the Devil, 47).
With that necessary introduction out of the way, the first of the two final “political” passages comes from The Doctrine and Covenants, Section 98, Verses 4-10:
“And now, verily I say unto you concerning the laws of the land, it is my will that my people should observe to do all things whatsoever I command them.
“And that law of the land which is constitutional, supporting that principle of freedom in maintaining rights and privileges, belongs to all mankind, and is justifiable before me.
“Therefore, I, the Lord, justify you, and your brethren of my church, in befriending that law which is the constitutional law of the land;
“And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil.
“I, the Lord God, make you free, therefore ye are free indeed; and the law also maketh you free.
“Nevertheless, when the wicked rule the people mourn.
“Wherefore, honest men and wise men should be sought for diligently, and good men and wise men ye should observe to uphold; otherwise whatsoever is less than these cometh of evil.”
This is a remarkable declaration by the Savior. He put His divine stamp of approval on the U.S. Constitution. In another passage not cited here but equally valid, the Lord confirmed that the Founding Fathers of the United States were “hands of wise men whom I raised up unto this very purpose” (Doctrine and Covenants 101:76-80).
Furthermore, we see that He encouraged His Saints to uphold the inspired Constitution and all principles harmonious with it. These principles support “the principle of freedom” and help us “in maintaining rights and privileges.” These are not American rights, but “belong to all mankind.” They are part of the “the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God” that the Declaration of Independence referred to. Anything more or less than these constitutional principles of Freedom are not merely wrong, different, or misguided, but come of evil.
Such a knowledge should make us think twice before supporting policies, parties, and people who find themselves opposed to the U.S. Constitution. This is so important because, in the final equation, we can’t support or uphold – whether knowingly or unwittingly – Satan’s political program, which destroys agency, and suppose we are worthy before God. Therefore, if the Savior stamped the U.S. Constitution with His seal of approval, it becomes a tenet of our faith to defend its principles with the same ferocity we would defend His other teachings and revelations.
The last verse cited in the above passage is a sermon in itself. It shows us how to vote. Have you ever considered that the Lord will judge you based, in part, on how you voted in life? Doesn’t the Bible make it clear that we will be judged for all our acts? (Romans 2:6; 1 Peter 1:17-23; Revelation 20:12).
Voting is a major act because it demonstrates our principles on matters involving human agency, life and death, property, public values, war and peace, etc. It shows whether we sanction or reject evil, force, and injustice. It also shows what we would do if we personally possessed the power to judge and punish. Is our judgement just or unjust? Remember, we are to “judge righteous judgement” (John 7:24) and that “with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged: and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again” (Matthew 7:2). Our votes are forms of judgment that will come back to us at the Judgment Day.
The Lord revealed here that to be in harmony with His will we must only support honest, wise, and good men – those who befriend constitutional principles of Freedom. If we don’t do this, our vote “cometh of evil.” And nothing evil will enter the Kingdom of God.
The concluding passage I wrote down last Sunday comes from the ultimate handbook on Freedom – The Book of Mormon. On my paper, I simply copied the book and chapter: Ether 8. There is so much in the chapter that is of great importance. I cite just a few of the verses that discuss Luciferian secret societies and the grave threat they pose to God’s work and the Freedom of mankind. Speaking to those whom he knew would one day read his writings, the ancient prophet Moroni relayed the Lord’s will and mind thus:
“And it came to pass that they [i.e. the ancient Jaredite people] formed a secret combination, even as they of old; which 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 now I, Moroni, do not write the manner of their oaths and combinations, for it hath been made known unto me that they are had among all people, and they are had among the Lamanites.
“And they have caused the destruction of this people of whom I am now speaking, and also the destruction of the people of Nephi.
“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.
“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.”
Powerful words! This command – for it is a commandment – never fails to impress upon me how dire our modern situation is and my own personal duty in respect to Freedom. We are not merely encouraged, but commanded, to “awake” to the “awful” reality of Satanic secret societies “which shall be among [us]” and which “seeketh to overthrow the freedom of all lands, nations, and countries” and which, if not checked, “bringeth to pass the destruction of all people.”
These frightful passages confirm that the “conspiracy theorists” are not so crazy after all. There is indeed a global cabal “built up by the devil” that wants to subjugate the entire world, destroy Freedom, and exterminate mankind. It engages in murder, war, and deception. The Book of Mormon illustrates the wicked workings and rotten fruit of these Devilish combinations. I also detailed this monstrous, malevolent secret conspiracy in my book Red Gadiantons: What the Prophets Have Taught about the Communist Secret Combination that Threatens Mankind.
The threat is very real. In fact, this wicked conspiracy is in its endgame and world events are rising to a crescendo of carnage and oppression surpassing anything we have ever seen. We are presently witnessing the attempt foretold by Moroni to destroy the Freedom of all lands. What will you personally do about it? Will you heed the command to awake and arise in opposition to Satan’s schemes? Will you stand in favor of the Lord’s political program and all just and universal constitutional principles of Freedom? I pray you will.
Despite this evil cabal’s attempts to dethrone God and overcome His people, they will ultimately fail and evil will “be done away.” The Devil will be dragged down to hell and all will know how impotent and pathetic he always was (see Isaiah 14). It won’t happen in Washington, however. Congress won’t legislate away the evil, being part of it. We won’t vote our way to deliverance, though voting right is a command and duty and will help us deliver our own souls. No, salvation from tyranny and Satan will only happen when we individually and collectively “come unto the fountain of all righteousness,” who is Jesus Christ. Only Jesus saves.
And there you have the verses I jotted down in Sunday School and the rationale behind why I chose them. To me, these are imperative duties and parts of my faith in Christ. I consider all of these things – prayer, standing as a witness of Christ, ordinances, rising in defense of Freedom, etc. – to be highly important. Had I had more time, I would have written many more verses that have impacted me, such as John 15:12 which states: “This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you”.
I would have also certainly added the testimony and plea of the Book of Mormon prophet Nephi, which is one of the sweetest passages of holy writ I know:
“And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins. . . .
“. . . And the words which I have spoken shall stand as a testimony against you; for they are sufficient to teach any man the right way; for the right way is to believe in Christ and deny him not; for by denying him ye also deny the prophets and the law.
“And now behold, I say unto you that the right way is to believe in Christ, and deny him not; and Christ is the Holy One of Israel; wherefore ye must bow down before him, and worship him with all your might, mind, and strength, and your whole soul; and if ye do this ye shall in nowise be cast out” (2 Nephi 25:26, 28-29).
Dear reader, may God bless you! May you ask yourself what is important to you in your faith. May you ask what is important for you to do, what sacrifices your faith asks you to make, and then do it. May you have the courage and fortitude to follow the Savior and be like Him.
Reader, you will fail, as I have, to measure up to Christ’s perfection. Yet, you can, as I have, taste of His power, goodness, and grace and receive strength to overcome Satan, to wade through affliction with faith, and to be a light to the dark world around you. Please accept my sincere prayer for your personal faith to increase and become a flame of inspiration inside you forever.
May 27, 2022