Gospel Doctrine OT c17 Beware Lest Thou Forget
Supplemental Reading: “Born of God,” Ezra Taft Benson, Gen. Conf., Oct. 1985
After testing, chastening, and teaching the Israelites in the wilderness for 40 years, the Lord said they were ready to enter the Promised Land. But first, he had some important instructions for them. Moses delivered these instructions in three sermons that are recorded in Deuteronomy.
Deut 8:1-10 Children of Israel had many evidences of Christ. They saw miracles and witnessed his hand many times during their 40 years in the wilderness. They knew and had testimonies of Jesus Christ. But still, they struggled.
? How did they struggle and why?
I believe they struggled with making actions consistent with belief.
? What is the difference or makes the difference in converting belief into action?
Pres. Ezra Taft Benson said:
“What think ye of Christ?” (Matt. 22:42) That question, posed by our Lord, has challenged the world for centuries.Anyone who will read the Book of Mormon and put it to the divine test that Moroni proposes (see Moro. 10:3-5) can be convinced that Jesus is the Christ. Once that conviction is gained, then comes the question “Will we choose to follow Him?” The devils believe that Jesus is the Christ, but they choose to follow Lucifer. (See James 2:19; Mark 5:7)Throughout the ages prophets have exhorted the people to make up their minds. “choose you this day whom ye will serve,” pled Joshua (Josh. 24:15)Elijah thundered, “How long halt ye between two opinions? If the Lord be God, follow him.” (1 kgs. 18:21)When you choose to follow Christ, you choose the Way, the Truth, the Life – the right way, the saving ruth, the abundant life. (See John 14:6)“I would commend you to seek this Jesus,” states Moroni. (Ether 12:41)
?What makes it hard to choose to follow Christ consistently?
?How can we make it easier to choose to follow Christ?
Moses’ counsel to the children of Israel can help us!
Deut 6: 5-9
Love the Lord w/ heart, soul & might
These words (scriptures) in heart
Teach words in house, talk, while sitting, walking, lying down, rise up
Bind words on hand and eyes –
Mosiah1:5–always before our eyes–what is before our eyes now?
Is it symbolic of relationship w/ Christ or longing for the world?
Write words on posts and gates
Ezra Taft Benson said:
"people who are “captained by Christ will be consumed in Christ. … Enter their homes and the pictures on their walls, the books on their shelves, the music in the air, their words and acts reveal them as Christians.They stand as witnesses of God at all times, and in all things, and in all places. (Mosiah 18:9) They have Christ on their minds, as they look unto Him in every thought. (D&C 6:36) They have Christ in their hearts as their affections are placed on Him forever (Alma 37:36).” (Conf Rep. Nov. ‘1985)
Deut 6:10-11 ?What does this mean? Then he says BEWARE!
Deut 6:12-18 (Also Deut 8:11-18) ?Beware of what? Why?
Don’t forget the Lord
Fear the Lord
Serve the Lord
Swear by his name
No other gods
Don’t tempt the Lord
Diligently keep commandments
Do what is right and good
In the midst of the depression, Melvin J. Ballard warned of this danger:
“We are in the age of self-indulgence. It is not peculiar to this Church; it is in the world. The spirit of it is rampant everywhere. It beats upon our shores from all points. It enters into the midst of the people. It is a deadly siege in an attempt to destroy that which persecution, mob violence, privation and hardship failed to destroy, -the integrity of this people. I am not a pessimist either. While I recognize the storms that are raging against our standards, I am as sure as that I live that the promises of the Lord will be fulfilled, and that this work shall not fail, nor shall it be given to another people. I recognize however, with my brethren, that the sorest trials that have ever come to the Church in any age of the world are the trials of peace and prosperity. But we are to do a new thing, a thing that never has before been done—We are to take the Church of Christ not only through the age of persecution and mob violence, but through the age of peace and prosperity. For we must learn to endure faithfully, even in peace and prosperity.
I am not praying for the return of persecution and poverty; I am praying for peace and prosperity; but above all things for strength and power to endure this test. For it was not the design and the intention of the Lord to have this people always in suffering, in bondage and distress. They shall come to peace and prosperity, but it is the sorest trial that will come to them. (Elder Melvin J. Ballard, April 1929 Conf. Rep.)
God will bless us. We must be cautious and careful with our blessings and testimonies. We must make our actions consistent with our beliefs.
Deut 8:18 What does it meant to establish his covenant?
Deut 6:23 He brought us out that he might bring us in.
Elder Ballard acknowledged that some young Church members worry about being misjudged and ridiculed for standing up for the Church’s doctrines and values.
“My dear young friends, don’t worry about those in the large and spacious building. … You are a great and important generation, and this is a great time to be alive! The future is bright. Say to yourself, “I am helping the Lord as I reach out to share my testimony and to teach the truths God has revealed in the last days.’” (CES Devotional, Sunday, May 4, 2014, San Diego, CA)
“They [handheld devices, such as smartphones] need to be our servants, not our masters.”
Rev 12:3 – 7 heads (lop one off and there’s another ready to getcha) ‘behold a great red dragon, having seven heads and ten horns, and seven crowns upon his heads.’
D&C 76:28-29 (Joseph Smith and Sidney Rigdon had this vision while translating the Bible) ‘wherefore, he maketh war with the saints of God, and encompasseth them round about.’