Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Free To Choose Eternal Life (2nd Nephi 10)

Pictured above is my good old Pops and my niece's son, Hayden, one of Dad's great grand kids, in 2007.  Hayden had just come into the world a short time previous, and Dad would be leaving it in just a few more months.  Hayden's new baby skin is soft and pure.  Dad's skin is calloused, scarred, and dented.  Hayden has a lifetime of learning to do.  Dad has about learned everything he's going to in this life.  Hayden doesn't even know who's holding him, although he likes this picture now. 

According to the Flesh
All that up there is just my lead-in to talking about one little part of the 2nd verse of 2nd Nephi 10:
2.  For behold, the promises which we have obtained are promises unto us according to the flesh; wherefore, as it has been shown unto me that many of our children shall perish in the flesh because of unbelief, nevertheless, God will be merciful unto many; and our children shall be restored, that they may come to that which will give them the true knowledge of their Redeemer.

You see the expression "according to the flesh" a lot in the scriptures.  What it means is, 'as pertaining to mortality.'  You may or may not find that interesting or useful.  In this verse, Jacob references promises made to the Nephites "according to the flesh".  The promise is found in...

verse 7:

7.  But behold, thus saith The Lord God:  When the day cometh that they shall believe in Me, that I am Christ, then have I covenanted with their fathers that they shall be restored in the flesh, upon the earth, unto the lands of their inheritance. 

It's the old "gathering of scattered Israel" promise.  So, Jacob says that, though many of their descendants will apostatize from the true gospel, many of them will not only eventually begin to believe and accept Jesus Christ as their Savior, but will be physically gathered in to their places of inheritance.

Some of this has happened already.  Most has yet to be fulfilled.  The cool part is that the house of Israel will eventually come unto Christ.  This is cool cuz...

2 Nephi 10:3-6
3.  Wherefore, as I said unto you, it must needs be expedient that Christ -for in the last night the angel spake unto me that this should be His name -should come among the Jews, among those who are the more wicked part of the world; and they shall crucify Him -for thus it behooveth our God, and there is none other nation on earth that would crucify their God.

4.  For should the mighty miracles be wrought among other nations they would repent, and know that He be their God.

5.  But because of priestcrafts and iniquities, they at Jerusalem will stiffen their necks against him, that He be crucified.

6.  Wherefore, because of their iniquities, destructions, famines, pestilences, and bloodshed shall come upon them; and they who shall not be destroyed shall be scattered among all nations.

It's also cool cuz...
We now pause for this message from Schoolhouse Rock.

2 Nephi 10:10-13
10.  But behold, this land, said God, shall be a land of thine inheritance, and the Gentiles shall be blessed upon the land.

11.  And this land shall be a land of liberty unto the Gentiles, and there shall be no kings upon the land, who shall raise up unto the Gentiles.

12.  And I will fortify this land against all other nations.

13.  And he that fighteth against Zion shall perish, saith God.
And it's important to note... In this case, "according to the flesh" means that, the house of Israel will one day be gathered and restored to the true gospel of Christ, each individual must come unto Christ, believe in Christ, and choose to follow Christ.

2nd Nephi 10: 16
16.  Wherefore, he that fighteth against Zion, both Jew and Gentile, both bond and free, both male and female, shall perish...

In order for this prophecy to be fulfilled, a land of freedom had to be established.  It would require a land of religious freedom for the Church of Jesus Christ to be restored and spread across the world.

A man sits in front of a Carl Bloch painting of Jesus
 Here's a few last verses.

 Reconciled:  Sweeter than syrup.
We've talked on many occasions about The Fall of Adam and Eve and their posterity (that's us), and how that means we were separated from God.  Reconcile means to be restored to good standing.

2 Nephi 10: 23-25
23.  Therefore, cheer up your hearts, and remember that ye are free to act for yourselves -to choose the way of everlasting death or the way of eternal life.

24.  Wherefore, my beloved brethren, reconcile yourselves to the will of God, and not to the will of the devil and the flesh; and remember, after ye are reconciled unto God, that it is only in and through the grace of God that ye are saved.

25.  Wherefore, may God raise you from death by the power of the resurrection, and also from everlasting death by the power of the atonement, that ye may be received into the eternal kingdom of God, that ye may praise Him through grace divine. Amen.
To be reconciled with our Heavenly Father, or brought back into His presence through the Grace of the Savior, Jesus Christ, we must reconcile ourselves to the will of God, and not keep following the dictates of our idiot, self-centered flesh.  Our spirits want heaven.  Our flesh wants pancakes.  Who wears the pants on your body, your spirit or your flesh?  Do you want heaven or pancakes? 

"Ye are free to act for yourselves
-to choose the way of everlasting
death or the way of eternal life...
reconcile yourselves to the will of God, and not to the will of the... flesh."

Peace be with you...

No comments:

Post a Comment