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By Bernard Gui
Something I wonder about...
In 3 Nephi 12, Jesus says to the people at the temple,
How are they more blessed if they believe the words of the eyewitnesses? Those who witnessed, believed, and were baptized also received forgiveness and the baptism of the Holy Ghost. I understand the implication that greater faith is required, but in what way are they “more blessed”? Is this a quantitative or qualitative increase?
Those who were at the temple already had their faith sorely tried. They survived persecution, threats of death because of their faith, cataclysmic destruction, and days of darkness. They were allowed to see and touch the risen Savior. That in itself is an incomparable blessing reserved for very few mortals. Their obligation then was to be His witnesses. Without them, we would not know of the Resurrection.
I understand that signs do not necessarily lead to faith. Many who see signs never believe or fall away, but none of these Nephites nor the disciples in Jerusalem who saw and touched the risen Lord fell away. Sister Gui suggested it means those who hear the testimony of the witnesses and believe are more blessed than those who hear the testimony and don’t believe. It seems to me, though, that the Savior is comparing two groups - the witnesses and those who believe the witnesses - and the latter are the more blessed.
On two other occasions, some people are declared more blessed.
1. Those who humble themselves without compulsion.
2. The three Nephite disciples who desired to tarry.
However, speaking to Thomas, the Lord said,
In this instance, those who believe without seeing are not more blessed.
I understand how these people are more blessed because of their faith. What do you think the Savior meant in 3 Nephi 12?
I'm a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ, just need a little feedback here...
Not sure how to describe this but here goes-
So I've noticed a trend among certain adults in my ward, like going to choir and then complaining about how the Bishop asked peope to join it but you had to exit since the music was too challenging, and just in general complaining when situations you put yourself in are challenging, or having so much pity for yourself and the situation you worked very hard to put yourself in that others have to compensate and do what your supposed to do in your calling - I can't help but ask myself: why did you put yourself in that situation? Like if the thorn in your side is asthma, you don't have to set your life's goal in running a marathon - but when you do, we should all applaud you, buy your book, hear your fireside, etc.and perhaps do something similar in our own lives?
Not sure what the name for this is but curious as to if anyone else has seen this?
Further, it seems psychologically unhealthy to be encouraged to blame yourself or your own perspective for drawing boundaries and saying no when it's necessary, this being the opposite of what a self-martyr complex-holder would do.
“On ward and stake levels leadership changes are necessary and, often, too frequent for our convenience and comfort. Some of us are inclined to resent and resist personnel changes. “Why can’t they leave him in?” or “Why do they have to divide our ward?” Our vision may be limited. Seldom are changes made that do not bring needed progress to a person or a situation. How often in retrospect have we thought, “I didn’t understand why that change was made in the program or why that person was given such a calling, but now I can see that it was just what was needed for the time. During transitional times, patience, love, and long-suffering are needed. A permanent part of our philosophy should be, “Never allow yourself to be offended by someone who is learning his job.”
“Change in our own church assignments may be even more disturbing. Often when we express a wish to never have that assignment, the bishop or stake president offers us the blessings of that self-same calling. At those times it is good to remember the words of Paul when he, troubled by many ailments, said, “I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me” (Philip. 4:13). https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1979/10/progress-through-change?lang=eng
1. My father in law and a few other people I know seem to need callings more than those callings need them (Scouters, like for decades).
It seems unhealthy to me, to need a calling more than it needs you; like to feel a part of your identity is literally missing unless you are called to serve in X group (Primary, Youth, scouts, RS, EQP, etc.) or if you attend church w/o a calling for a while (new ward, stake boundaries; you moved for work, etc.)
So detaching the correct amount - accepting any calling that comes to you with no thought of specialization - seems a more healthy but also aimless approach.
2. If an EQP member was called to serve as the Primary Pianist, this seems like it woudl upset the hierarchy of responsibleness the ward and stake leaders have;
BUT if there is no such thing as "advancing in the priesthood" per Elder Christofferson, why would such a neutral (not advancing, not retrogressing) calling be less preferred?
Thanks in advance.
Looking for some insight into Alma 29:3 -
But behold, I am a man, and do sin in my wish; for I ought to be content with the things which the Lord hath allotted unto me.
Seems like if Alma's faith grew he would naturally pray for not only his people but the Lamanites, and then others (people in Jerusalem and Middle East, Lost Tribes, etc.).
But then he chides himself for wanting to do that.
What's the problem here?
Should he trust God to have called Prophets to cry repentance to all those other people so Alma should just "stay in his lane?"
When you pray and you're really feeling the Spirit, what would be incorrect about praying for your family, ward, stake, the whole church, the whole world - to be blessed with health, prosperity, a greater acceptance of the restored gospel?
I guess we should focus on the jurisdiction of our own callings but honestly I pray for things I'm quite sure God laughs out loud at, not to mention when I pray for others outside of my stake, church, etc.
Seems like the scriptures support ranking of certain things like sins (murder, sexual sin, etc.), which to me seems to suggest a specific amount of suffering required by the Savior in order to satisfy justice and provide forgiveness.
And in prayer: seems like our ancestors whose Temple work we give them the option to accept, can pray with more faith and more power after we complete their Temple work and they choose to accept it. No?
Seems like service (operationalized in the form of callings) might also be rank-able and quantifiable.
(Perhaps framing it as an objective event like the Second Coming would help: "Wickedness will not hasten it. Righteousness will not postpone it." - since service is an eternal process not an event, though - gives me another disconnect...
It is confusing to me then to realize that callings are not ranked and the fact that none of us "advance" in callings but instead, we progress in a nonlinear, individual path.
My wife said this is the case because we all come to earth to learn the same lessons but we learn them in different ways.
As a loyal spouse, I'm not allowed to question nor accept her advice on face value....but it seems to explain the disconnect my neurons so often confront.
Her ancestors who held callings for 20+ years, I suppose, simplified things: I was called to do x. That's what I'm doing until I'm released.
If any of you beautiful people could expound on these disconnects and my wife's wisdom, I'd be much obliged.