Tuesday, April 14, 2015

2 Nephi 1:14
David O. McKay in CR, April. 1964 p.20
" There are those, however, who act as though they do not believe in eternity or a resurrection. They cower at the thought of nuclear war, and to save their own bodies they would have peace at any price.  Yet the best assurance of peace and life is to be strong morally and militarily. But they want life at the sacrifice of principles. Rather than choose liberty or death, they prefer life with slavery. But they overlook a crucial scripture....fear not them which kill the body but are not able to kill the soul; but rather fear him which is able to destroy both soul and body  in hell. ( Matt. 10:28 ) The Lord could, I suppose, have avoided the war in the heaven over free agency. All he needed to do was to compromise with the devil, but had he done so he would have ceased to be God.  While it is more difficult to live the truth, such as standing for free agency, some of us may in the not-too-distant future be required to die for the truth. But the best preparation for eternal life is to be prepared at all times to die- fully prepared by a valiant fight for right. "

Elder Richard G. Scott - April 1996 GC
" Your agency, the right to make choices, is not given so that you can get what you want. This divine gift is provided so that you will choose what your Father in Heaven wants for you. That way He can lead you to become all that He intends you to be."

Vaughn J. Featherstone - 13, Feb. 2001, BYU
" Expect to have your body cravings almost overwhelm you when you are alone. The narrowed perspective will be ever present to persuade you, your physical self, to gratify it's self in spite of great things out there. Emotion is the king, right emotional relationships is the thing. Knowing this helps at times, but doesn't bring a cure-all....You have to have a strategy for handling this temptation. Perhaps the most subtle of temptations come to us when we don't recognize them as bodily appetites pushing for over-emphasis. However, in the very clash of ideas, if we hold up our side in the battle, the truth arises. Opposition in all things needs to be strengthened from the righteous side. We need to oppose evil with good in order for truth to emerge. We might look at temptation and say as C.S. Lewis did with this unusual insight:
A silly idea is current that good people don't know what temptations means. This is an obvious lie. Only those who try to resist temptation know how strong it is. After all, you find out the strength of the opposing army by fighting against it, not by giving in. You find out the strength of the wind by fighting against it, not by lying down. A man who gives into temptation after five min. simply does not know what it would have been like an hour later. That is why bad people in very little sense know very little about badness. They have lived a sheltered life by always giving in. We never find the strength of an evil impulse inside until we try to fight it; and Christ because he was the only man who never yielded to temptation, is also the only man who knows to the full what temptation means - the only complete realist. ( C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity )

Harold B. Lee, The Teachings of Harold B. Lee
" How we please with you precious young people....you think we don't trust you. I bid you remember what President J. Reuben Clark Jr. Said to his teenage daughter as she was going out on a date in Mexico City. He asked her to be in at a certain hour and said, : Remember that you are the daughter of the United States ambassador of Mexico, and remember that you are a Latter Day Saint."
Chaffing under that constant, urgent reminder, the teenage daughter said, " Daddy,w hat is the matter, don't you trust me? " His answer must have shocked her as he said, " No, my darling, I don't trust you. I don't even trust myself."  I want you to see what we are trying to say to you and herald it to all your associates. We who are along the way of life a little more know that when we get out into certain areas, we don't even dare trust ourselves, let alone you who have less experience to guide you in making proper decisions. "

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

M.Russel Ballard Satellite Broadcast , 3/3/02 BYU
Long before the world was formed, Satan and those who followed after him raged against the forces of good and tried to overthrow the work of God. That struggle has not ended, only shifted battlegrounds. It is ruthless and relentless, and the objective of the battle is your eternal soul and mine.
The Apostle Paul spoke of how to arm ourselves for this conflict in these very graphic terms:
“Be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.
“Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.
“For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
“Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day” (Eph. 6:10–13).
How do we put on the whole armor of God so that we may, as Paul promises, “be able to withstand in the evil day”?
I like to think of this spiritual armor not as a solid piece of metal molded to fit the body but more like chain mail. Chain mail consists of dozens of tiny pieces of steel fastened together to allow the user greater flexibility without losing protection. I say that because it has been my experience that there is not one great and grand thing we can do to arm ourselves spiritually. True spiritual power lies in numerous smaller acts woven together in a fabric of spiritual fortification that protects and shields from all evil.
It is a common expression to talk about the “chinks” in a person’s armor. The definition of the word chink is “a small cleft, slit, or fissure.” 1 Should an arrow strike exactly one of the chinks in one’s armor, a fatal wound can result.

Elder Henry B. Eyring , CES conference. 14 Aug. 2001 

The spiritual strength sufficient for our youth to stand firm just a few years ago will soon not be enough. Many of them are remarkable in their spiritual maturity and in their faith. But even the best of them are sorely tested. And the testing will become more severe...Too many of our students say..I'm only young once. For now I will go with the flow. Well the flow has become a flood and will soon be torrent. It will become a torrent of sounds and sights and sensations that invite
temptation and offend the Spirit of God. Swimming back upstream to purity against the tides of the world was never easy. It is getting harder and may soon be frighteningly difficult. 


2 Nephi 1

John 19: 1-5

Young Women- God sent women to earth with some qualities in extra capacity. In speaking to Young Women, President Faust observed that femininity is divine adornment of humanity. It finds expression in your capacity to love, your spirituality, delicacy, radiance, sensitivity, creativity, charm, graciousness, gentleness, dignity, and quiet beauty. It manifests differently in each girl or women, but each....possess it. Femininity is part of your inner beauty. Women of God can never be like women of the world. The world has enough women who are tough; we need women who are tender. There are enough women who are coarse; we need women who are kind. There are enough women who are rude; we need women who are refined. We have enough women who have fame and fortune; we need more women of faith. We have enough greed; we need more goodness. We have enough vanity; we need more virtue. We have enough popularity; we need more virtue. We have enough popularity; We need more purity. ( Margret Audauld , Ensign Nov.2000 )

Young Men - Satan is known as the great deceiver. His religion, his philosophy, and his work is based on deception and lies. His objective is to thwart the work of the Lord by misleading us and eventually making us “miserable like unto himself” (2 Ne. 2:27). He would have us believe that he is the man and that his ways bring us to manhood.
By contrast, Jesus voluntarily submitted Himself to the will of the Father. As a result He was betrayed, accused, beaten, and judged. His sacrifice was not mandatory. It was borne out of courage, duty, and love, and it led Him to the bitter cup that caused Him to bleed from every pore. After Pilate had witnessed the enormous suffering and humiliation of Jesus and even argued for His release, he finally succumbed to the demands of the Jews. As he turned Him over for crucifixion, he did so with the simple but defining words, “Behold the man!” (John 19:5). Yes, Jesus is the man. He possesses all characteristics of the true, ideal man. His ways, not Satan’s ways, lead to manhood. Anyone who believes otherwise is already tangling himself up in the everlasting chains of Satan’s deception (see 2 Ne. 28:19).
1. A true man is strong enough to withstand the wiles of Satan. 
2. A true man is humble enough to submit himself to the redemptive powers of the Savior....Real courage includes standing against the evil one, even when we stand alone, often feeling the disdain and ridicule of others. This is courage. This is strength. This is manhood, and it can be tough....
You can describe a man in inches, pound, complexion or physique. But you measure a man by character, compassion, integrity, tenderness and principle. Simply stated, the measure of a man are embedded in his heart and soul, not in physical attributes. ( Bishop Richard Edgley, Ensign Nov. 1999 )

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

2 Nephi 1:23

" It is as Martin Luther once said, " The kingdom of God is like a besieged city surrounded on all sides by death. Each man and woman has a place on the wall to defend and no one can stand where another stands, but nothing prevents us from calling encouragement to one another. "
      ( quoted in Lewis Spitz, The Renaissance and Reformation Movements ( Chicago : Rand McNally, 1971 ) 

Moroni - Orson Hyde, 4 July 1854, Journal of Discourse, Vol. #6 pg.368

In those early and perilous times, our men were few, and our resources limited. Poverty was among the most potent enemies we had to encounter; yet our arms were success-ful; and it may not be amiss to ask here, by whose power victory so often perched on our banner? It was by the agency of that same angel of God that appeared unto Joseph Smith, and revealed to him the history of the early inhabitants of this country, whose mounds, bones, and remains of towns, cities, and fortifications speak from the dust in the ears of the living with the voice of undeniable truth. This same angel presides over the destinies of America, and feels a lively interest in all our doings. He was in the camp of Washington; and, by an invisible hand, led on our fathers to conquest and victory; and all this to open and prepare the way for the Church and kingdom of God to be established on the western hemisphere, for the redemption of Israel and the salvation of the world.
This same angel was with Columbus, and gave him deep impressions, by dreams and by visions, respecting this New World. Trammeled by poverty and by an unpopular cause, yet his persevering and unyielding heart would not allow an obstacle in his way too great for him to overcome; and the angel of God helped him—was with him on the stormy deep, calmed the troubled elements, and guided his frail vessel to the desired haven. Under the guardianship of this same angel, or Prince of America, have the United States grown, increased, and flourished, like the sturdy oak by the rivers of water.

Abraham Lincoln's  
1863 Thanksgiving Proclamation  

It is the duty of nations as well as of men to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God; to confess their sins and transgressions in humble sorrow, yet with assured hope that genuine repentance will lead to mercy and pardon; and to recognize the sublime truth, announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations are blessed whose God is the Lord.

We know that by His divine law, nations, like individuals, are subjected to punishments and chastisements in this world.  May we not justly fear that the awful calamity of civil war which now desolates the land may be a punishment inflicted upon us for our presumptuous sins, to the needful end of our national reformation as a whole people?

We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of heaven; we have been preserved these many years in peace and prosperity; we have grown in numbers, wealth and power as no other nation has ever grown.

But we have forgotten God.  We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us, and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own.  Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace, too proud to pray to the God that made us.

It has seemed to me fit and proper that God should be solemnly, reverently and gratefully acknowledged, as with one heart and one voice, by the whole American people.  I do therefore invite my fellow citizens in every part of the United States, and also those who are at sea and those who are sojourning in foreign lands, to set apart and observe the last Thursday of November as a day of Thanksgiving and praise to our beneficent Father Who dwelleth in the heavens.

A. Lincoln
October 3, 1863

Saturday, February 28, 2015

1 Nephi 21 David Shumway's Notes

vs. 15 - It is almost physically and emotionally possible for a nursing mother to forget her child.

vs. 16 - Jewish custom - women would mark their hands with their children's names or something to remind them constantly of their children.

1 Nephi 22 :17-26 David Shumway's Notes

How do I know if I am a trampler or a follower?

Vs. 17,23, and 25

2 Nephi 1-10 David Shumway's Notes

Lehi's " dysfunctional " family is a powerful lesson to today's struggles in families.  ( 1:13-14 , 2:1-2, 4:25 )

You can be happy in the midst of affliction ( 5:27 )

Even in abuse, death, and divorce

President George W. Bush - 2 Nephi 1:7 

" I ask you to seek a common good beyond your comfort...To serve your Nation, Beginning with your neighbor. I ask you to be citizens: citizens, not spectators; citizens, not subjects; responsible citizens, building communities of service and a nations of character. "

1 Nephi 8 

Neal A. Maxwell, Ensign, Nov.2003, p.99-102

" Brothers and sisters, we do not go many hours in our lives without having to decide again 'which way do we face' and whether we will pitch our tents facing Sodom or the holy temple...Since we are thus fully accountable to Him, on Judgment Day we cannot invoke the Fifth Amendment!...The cast of players on this planet for whom the revelations and translations are so pertinent includes those who, in that familiar phrase, are living the 'lives of quiet desperation'. They have now been joined by those lives of noisy, slurping indulgence, wrongly celebrating their capacity to feel and become ' past feeling ', hence, they lick their particular platters in a desperate search for more sensations. Such individuals, however are still not a majority but a ' lesser part ' of the people. Notably at the last day the adversary 'will not support' those who followed him anyway. He cannot. Jesus will triumph majestically, and the adversary's clever constructs, 'pleasing to the carnal mind', will also collapse and 'the fall thereof will be exceedingly great', Even now, one can see in the lives of those prodigals who come to themselves the devil's doctrines dripping in early meltdown. Many having experienced the utter emptiness of lower ways, are in 'preparation to hear the word' and now await being informed of the rescuing revelations and translations...These are so needed by those whose weary hands hang down because they suffer doctrinal anemia, which can be treated by the red blood cells of the Restoration....Meanwhile. let us expect that many will regard us indifferently. Others will see us as quaint or misled. Let us bear the pointing fingers which, ironically, belong to those finally who, being bored, find the 'great and spacious building ' to be a stale and cramped third-class hotel."

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

 Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph F. Smith, 382 

There can be no genuine happiness separate and apart from the home, and every effort made to sanctify and preserve its influence is uplifting to those who toil and sacrifice for its establishment... There is no happiness without service, and there is no greater service than that which converts the home into a divine institution, and which promotes and preserves family life. 

Spencer W. Kimball , Ensign , Nov. 1978

In 1946 I visited Hawaii shortly after a huge tidal wave, where walls of water some forty feet high struck Hilo and the Hamakua coast, and I saw the devastation that resulted. Homes had been overturned and shredded, crushed into splinters like toothpicks; fences and gardens were obliterated; bridges and roads were washed away. Bathtubs, refrigerators, mangled autos lay strewn all about the streets. Where one of our little chapels had stood, nothing remained but the foundation. More than a hundred people lost their lives; as many more were injured; thousands were left homeless. I heard many stories while there of suffering, of heroism, of salvation.
One woman told how she received a telephone message from friends to get out and to leave—that a tidal wave was coming. She looked out to sea and saw the monstrous wave approaching, like a mountain. She and her husband picked up the baby and ran for their lives up the hill. However, two of their little girls were away from home playing near a clump of lauhala trees. They saw the wave coming, ran into the trees, and held tightly with their arms around the tree trunks. The first gigantic wave washed entirely over them, but they held their breath and clung with all their might until the water receded and their heads were again above the water. When the wave receded, they quickly ran up the hill before the succeeding waves came. Together, the family watched from the safety of the hill as their home below disappeared under the pounding of the waves.
We, too, are faced with powerful, destructive forces unleashed by the adversary. Waves of sin, wickedness, immorality, degradation, tyranny, deceitfulness, conspiracy, and dishonesty threaten all of us. They come with great power and speed and will destroy us if we are not watchful.
But a warning is sounded for us. It behooves us to be alert and to listen and flee from the evil for our eternal lives. Without help we cannot stand against it. We must flee to high ground or cling fast to that which can keep us from being swept away. That to which we must cling for safety is the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is our protection from whatever force the evil one can muster. An inspired Book of Mormon prophet counseled his people: “Remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo” (Hel. 5:12).