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Posted in Our Heritage

Welcome, to the Understanding and Application of Plain Precious Truths

I glory in plainness, in the glory of the Lord, and keeping his commandments and my commitment covenants. It is He who has set upon me the love of knowledge, wisdom and favor.

May we all find the Lord in His true church upon the earth, and enter in, through faith, repentance, baptism by immersion by one holding the proper priesthood authority, and then being confirmed a member of His church upon the receipt of the Gift of the Holy Ghost.

I love being a son of God with full access to the atonement of His Son Jesus Christ. I love the church and kingdom of God here on the earth. It is burning with the glory of the redeemer of the world in the darkest night.

We can all be a light to the world around us. May these insights help you find your way, and better your walk with our Lord Jesus Christ.

Shane

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Posted in Atonement

Understanding the Fruits of the Atonement

I Testify

Includes a short report of 10 Scriptural References of the gospel principle, the Atonement.

First Reference under atonement, taken from the Bible Dictionary.

Note: I have taken the liberty to alter and supplement the definition of atonement, as found in The Bible Dictionary, to more fully and accurately define the aspects found therein.

The word atonement describes the setting “at one” of those who have been estranged and denotes the reconciliation of man to God. Sin is the cause of the estrangement, and therefore the purpose of atonement is to correct or overcome the consequences of sin. From the time of Adam to the death of Jesus Christ, true believers were instructed to offer animal sacrifices to the Lord. These sacrifices were symbolic of the forthcoming death of Jesus Christ and were done by faith in Him (Moses 5:5–8).

Jesus Christ, as the anointed One, and Only Begotten Son of God and the only sinless person to live on this earth, was the only one capable of making an atonement for mankind. By His selection and foreordination in the Grand Council before the world was formed, His divine Sonship, His sinless life, the shedding of His blood in the garden of Gethsemane, His death on the cross and subsequent bodily resurrection from the grave, He made a perfect atonement for all mankind.

All are covered as pertaining to the resurrection, for all shall rise from the dead with immortal bodies because of Jesus’ Atonement. “For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Cor. 15:22)

All little children are innocent at birth, and will automatically be covered by the atonement until developmentally accountable.

The forgiveness of sins is conditional however, on repentance. Each person’s individual forgiveness touches them to the degree that they have faith in Jesus Christ, repent of their sins, and obey the gospel.

The services of the Day of Atonement foreshadowed the atoning work of Christ (Lev. 4; 23:26–32; Heb. 9). The scriptures point out that no law, ordinance, or sacrifice would be satisfactory if it were not for the Atonement of Jesus Christ (Heb. 10:1–9; 2 Ne. 9:5–24; Mosiah 13:27–32).

Sin is rebellion. (1 Jn. 3:4) It is a refusal on men’s part to submit to the laws of God (Rom. 8:7). By transgression, man loses control over his own will, and becomes the slave of sin (addiction). (Rom. 7:14) So incurs the penalty of spiritual death, which is separation from God (Rom. 6:23). The Atonement of Jesus Christ brings all mankind before the bar of God, to be answerable for their own manner of life. The means of atonement is provided by the Father (John 3:16–17), and is offered in the life and person of His Son, Jesus Christ (2 Cor. 5:19).

Second Reference:

Under Atonement, the measure of Grace, as it relates to the atonement.

2 Nephi 10:24
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.

In other words, pray to the Father for forgiveness, repent and know that it is not your penitence alone, or even good works you do through the atonement and grace, but that even after all this we fall short, and need Him. For we can do no good without Him. We would even die spiritually and physically except for the atonement.

That’s the second great secret, that even the adversary will at one point come to himself and make his way back as the ultimate prodigal son, after the burning and purging clean in outer darkness.

Third Reference:

Under Atonement, Mercy, as it relates to the atonement as a fruit of the atonement.

Isaiah 54:7
For a small moment have I forsaken thee; but with great mercies will I gather thee.

A poem I wrote which substantiates this scripture.

Mercy

Mercy is the substance,
Which stops our downward fall,
And gives place for grace,
To then lift us to our potential.

It is the sure steady rock,
Which we can all rely upon.
It’s essence and founder,
Is Christ our Savior.

He gained this victory and power,
As He lived and sacrificed His life,
With charity as the oath and standard held,
And champion which prevailed.

Christ is the Word, possessing
Every perfect godly attribute,
Which were poured forth,
From the garden, cross, and tomb.

He bought our way to freedom,
Living and giving His life in perfect light,
Shewing us mercy in loving submission,
And giving all the power to rise.

Mercy and grace work side by side,
And hand in hand, for without them,
We could not comprehend,
Or be lifted out of the power of Satan.

Mercy is God’s gracious gift,
Our great loving rescuer.
Grace is shared by Christ,
His gifts of perfecting power.

Forth Reference:

Under Atonement, Charity, the pure love of Jesus Christ.

2 Nephi 33:7
I have charity for my people, and great faith in Christ that I shall meet many souls spotless at his judgment-seat.

Nephi had developed great charity for all his people, and knew that he would be greeted with such a wonderful reunion on the other side when he passed.

Fifth Reference:

Under Atonement, Hope, as a gift of the Spirit from the atonement.

Listen to the powerful words from Joel as he relates the word of the Lord.

Joel 3:16
The Lord also shall roar out of Zion, and utter his voice from Jerusalem; and the heavens and the earth shall shake: but the Lord will be the hope of his people, and the strength of the children of Israel.

Sixth Reference:

Under atonement, Faith, as it is a gift of the Spirit from the atonement.

Matthew 9:29
Then touched he their eyes, saying, According to your faith be it unto you.

Seventh Reference:

Under Atonement, Repentance, as a gift of the atonement.

Acts 3:19
Repent ye therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, when the times of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord;

The refreshing spoken of for us is the second coming, when the presence of the Lord will be here, and refresh the earth, and all that be from the time since the world began.

Eighth Reference:

Under the Atonement, Perfection, a fruit of conversion through the atonement.

Moses 8:27
And thus Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord; for Noah was a just man, and perfect in his generation; and he walked with God, as did also his three sons, Shem, Ham, and Japheth.

To me being a perfect man in this life, in understanding and in grace, means nothing more than to be born again, walking in the love of the Lord, and having the constant companion of the Gift of theHoly Ghost, and knowing to whom you belong. In living all according up what you know to the very best of your ability.

Ninth Reference:

Under the Atonement, Humility, as is a gift of the Spirit.

James 4:10
Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

Humility is a strength.

Tenth Reference:

Under the Atonement, Patience, a parent virtue of many other attributes of Christ.

Revelations 14:12
Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of God, and the faith of Jesus.

Shane

Posted in Eternal Progression

God’s Perpetual Growth as Father

As is stated, God grows through his children, and through carrying out his work and glory, to bring us up to be as He.

Although God is perfect and able to do all, except sin, and knows and has all power over all his creations and children, He still grows. To say otherwise is to try to limit Him.

Let’s face it, we all grow and change throughout all the eons and eternal lives we go through throughout all the eternities. Once we’ve finished our cycle of the current eternal life, we are then called up to the next larger, more powerful, bigger and better phase of life.

What awaits us then? Another premortal, mortal and postmortal existence, only on a much larger scale. The extremes will be extended, both good and bad, with the inherent, endowed ability to be a higher form of entity than is attainable in our current eternal life of premortal, mortal and postmortal experience.

To then focus more on our current state, we are all in the progression of life in the present, past and future. What we do impacts the future, just as our past has effected our present. However, did you know that our future also effects our present? It does! It goes both ways, back and forth, ’round and ’round again, as we roll up the progressive “hill” of advancement in eternal life.

There’s more, but it cannot be written, be it forbidden.

Shane

Posted in Agency, The Fall

The Fall and Atonement Provide Agency For Man

Adam and Eve were innocent before the Fall, in which they had choice, but not agency. For agency is the ability to do good, under the knowledge of good and evil. They used their choice to chose to be given agency, by surcombing to the Fall. But there had to be an opposition to the Fall to allow this to take place, and for mankind to be given the opportunity to be reconciled with the Father. Only Jesus could do this. He is the perpetuation of the plan of God for man. It was God’s holy will to offer up His Son, and to swallow up sin, via the bitter cup (literally speaking). But he shank not, and drank the utter dregs, finishing His preparations for man, as was His father’s will.

Before this time in Adam and Eve’s innocents, there could be no good, for there was no evil. See 2 Nephi 2:11 below.

11 It must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, my firstborn in the wilderness, righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad. Wherefore, all things must needs be a compound in one; wherefore, if it should be one body it must needs remain as dead, having no life neither death, nor corruption nor incorruption, happiness nor misery, neither sense nor insensibility. (2 Nephi 2:11)

Adam and Eve chose to trust in the feelings they had, and in their redeemer, without fully knowing the import of their decision’s outcome. It was a well thought out, as well as well felt out decision, relying on the feelings of their hearts and spirits, which helped them to ultimately make their choice.

God knew that they would eventually come to the point where they would realize that they needed more to help them grow, in which they would choose to and need the Lord’s saving atonement. This is why a redeemer was chosen and prepared from before the foundations of the earth.

The Fall, or Adam’s transgression, is a spiritual death because Adam and Eve were separated from the presence of God and given agency to act for themselves and not to be acted upon. See 2 Nephi 2:26

They were also given the great power of procreation, so that they could keep the commandment to multiply, and replenish the earth and have joy in their posterity. See Genisis 1:28

In this new state, God gave them the bodily change to have children. This is so because God gave them the commandment to multiply, and He always provides a way to obey Him.

If it were possible for them to have had children before the Fall, God would have had no purpose in the Earth for our mortal test period of probation.

We needed death in both the separation from God spiritually, as well as our death physically, for us to progress onward to become like Him. This is why resurrection is so important. We need to be tried, reproved and repent, in order grow up to become like Him, even as a child can grow up to be like their parents.

God had to create Adam and Eve in innocence, and give them the commandments He did, for God is a God of righteousness, and cannot create a state of sin or Fall.

It is an eternal principle that to everything good there is a little bad, and to everything bad there is a little good. This is why out of all the trees in the garden of Eden (which is our Earth’s real mortal name), there was only one poisened tree, which was the fig tree (which has changed over the years now from being what it once was in the beginning).

  • The principle of perfection

Because it is not within Heavenly Father’s nature to do or introduce error, He had to say to them, Do not eat, or you shall surely die, all of which is true. Yet, He also wanted us to become like Him. In doing so we would have to walk where He has walked, do as He has done, and follow the course He has gone.

See Teachings of the Presidents of the Church- Joseph Smith, pg 41 below.

God Himself was once as we are now, and is an exalted man, and sits enthroned in yonder heavens! That is the great secret. If the veil were rent today, and the great God who holds this world in its orbit, and who upholds all worlds and all things by His power, was to make Himself visible,—I say, if you were to see Him today, you would see Him like a man in form—like yourselves in all the person, image, and very form as a man. (Teachings of the Presidents of the Church – Joseph Smith, pg 41)

Now, speaking of God’s plan, the adversary is very much a part of it. We need opposition to permit, or rather give us permission to grow. This need is stated in the afore mentioned scripture in 2 Nephi 2:11, that there must be an opposition in all things.

Because the Lord took on all sins, and the source from which they spring, He also takes the ones from which they spring. Yes, somewhere, sometime, in the great eons of the eternal lives and onward, the ultimate prodigal son will, having burned and purged clean in the lake of fire and brimstone of outter darkness, come to himself, and begin his long trek home. For God is a perfect God with perfect love, and a perfect plan, and He will not lose any of His children.

So, is there hope for the rest of us? Definitely!

Shane

Posted in Grace, mercy

Grace, Salvation & Judgement: Part Two

When we approach the judgement bar of God to be judged, we will be exactly as we were spiritually before we died. We will face Christ, and see ourselves exactly for who we are. This is so because Christ is the “true mirror,” which means that our true self will be reflected back to us, in the image and countenance of Christ.

We will look on Him, and see our standing with Him. Compassionate, kind, loving, refined, or sorrow, sadness, disappointment, badness.

However we have been on our mortal sojourn on earth, justice, mercy and grace will determine our salvation, and the extent thereof.

Shane

Posted in Change

Relationships – We Can Change People: Part Two

In every exchange, whether passing by someone and making eye contact, or having a good common discussion with someone, we effect each other. A person who is an agent of light, love and Spirit, will make a good change, no matter how small or big, in their exchanges with another. Light will always extinguish dark.

This is why we must act as righteous individuals, and not be acted upon. However, for an unrepentant, darkened individual, who chooses to be dark in spite of a righteous exchange with someone, they will in essence harden their hearts more, and become even worse than they were before.

Every action has an equal and opposite action or reaction, meaning that we can react negatively to a negative action, or we can act positively to a negative action. The same would hold true for the opposite.

We can act positively, and have a positive outcome on someone who is negative, even if we can’t see it, or notice the change from our exchange.

We must seek the Spirit in all we do, and listen to and obey His promptings early. In this knowledge we can effectively and joyfully be successful member missionaries.

Shane

Posted in Agency

Professionalism – Society’s Way of Communism

“Everyone act the same, be the same. Don’t talk this way, say these things, or do those things. It will be offensive.”

Sounds like a bunch of robots, who have no rights to express, feel, or create according to their conscience. They must, according to professionalism, by means of earning a living, be these lifeless human beings, controlled and dictated by the puppeteer of socialistic communism. In other words, professionalism. If you don’t agree, read on.

So what’s the alternative then? Is there a guide that leads us down a better path? A route that leads everyone to a more express part of who we really are? Can it truly be reached in a capitalistic society? Not fully.

The old adage that money is the root of all evil is real. After all, loving something that is good can’t be wrong. Yes, it may be the root, but it’s not the source. The adversary is the source, and he uses money to corrupt people.

As for me, money is worthless. A divide between living the law of consecration, wherein everyone gets to know each other, uses their gifts and skills, and freely provides what they have to offer each other. In this environment there is personal growth, service and love unrestrained. May we seek this better way.

Shane

Posted in Born Again

Ammon, a Missionary to the Lamanites

This sketch’s context comes out from The Book of Mormon. Even from an Ammon, a missionary to the Lamanites, who knew and witnessed his own friend Alma, undergo a forgiveness of sins, through a falling down unto the earth, in a comatose type state. While under, he underwent a major change and healing of both body and spirit, his soul purifying and acclimating towards righteousness. So too, Ammon knew that when his investigator King Lamoni fell to the earth, it was unto the same effect.

This is also witnessed afterwards, by the awakening experience of both Alma and King Lamoni. Each, when they awoke, had been born again in Christ, through His loving, saving, powerful atonement.

Lamoni exclaimed, “Blessed be the name of God, and blessed art thou, for as sure as thou livest, behold, I have seen my Redeemer.” Alma exclaimed, “I have repented of my sins, and have been redeemed of the Lord; behold I am born of the Spirit. And the Lord said unto me: Marvel not that all mankind, yea, men and women, all nations, kindreds, tongues and people, must be born again; yea, born of God.”

Both Alma and Lamoni had similar saving experiences. Alma became a great missionary, and King Lamoni a great missionary to his people.

Shane