Presentation on theme: "3 Nephi 11 The central Message of every Prophet has been the divinity of Jesus Christ. 3 Nephi 11:1 If this event had occurred one year later, the multitude."— Presentation transcript:
3 Nephi 11 The central Message of every Prophet has been the divinity of Jesus Christ. 3 Nephi 11:1 If this event had occurred one year later, the multitude would have been perfectly familiar with these great changes, and they would not have been in so much awe (A.T.G.Q. 4:25-29).
The Great White God Many legends exist among Indian tribes of America about the experience of a great white god to their ancestors many years ago. Stories told of the white bearded European discovers coming to America and the native people falling down to worship them. They thought their great white god had returned. Mexican mythology suggests that Quetzalcoatl was born of a virgin and was both god and man. The name Quetzalcoatl literally means, “bird-serpent” or “serpent” of precious plumage. Some have speculated that this title was given to the resurrected Jesus Christ because he appeared to them by descending out of the sky like a bird.
Indian legends also state that this great white god was bearded, which was unheard of for mature Indians in the fifteenth century. Jesus may have worn a beard, since they were common in the land of Jerusalem. According to tradition, a white god came and taught the people principles of social order, gave them their religion, taught them to weave, and taught them to make implements of bronze and ornaments of gold and silver. It is no wonder that Indians who have heard these legends respond when they learn of the visit of the Lord Jesus Christ in 3 Nephi 11. This account has touched millions of hearts as they have felt the great love of the Lord for His people.
Christ-like Qualities found in 3 Nephi Seeks to understand others and does not have the spirit of contention (3 Nephi 11:28-30). 2. Believes in Christ (v.33). 3. Striving to repent (v.38). 4. Has been baptized (v.38). 5. Has received the gift of the Holy Ghost (v.35).
6. Heeds the words of Gods chosen leaders (3 Nephi 12:1). 7. Mourns for personal sins (v.4). 8. Hungers and thirsts after righteousness (v.6). 9. Is merciful to others (v.7). 10. Is pure in heart (v.8). 11. Is a peacemaker (v.9).
12. Endures persecution patiently (v.10-12). 13. Controls temper (v.21-22). 14. Keeps thoughts pure and does not lust (v ). 15. Is honest and has integrity (v.33-37). 16. Seeks to bless and love enemies (v.39-45).
17. Gives financial contributions without desiring the praise of man (3 Nephi13:1-4). 18. Prays and fasts in secret (v.5-18). 19. Does not judge his fellow men harshly (3 Nephi 14:1-5).
3 Nephi 11:3-5 What kind of voice does the lord use to speak to his people? How do we open our ears? The Lord told Elijah to “Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake: and after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice” (1 Kings 19:11-12).
I have come to believe also that it is not wise to continually talk of unusual spiritual experiences. They are to be guarded with care and shared only when the Spirit itself prompts you to use them to the blessings of others. I have learned that strong, impressive spiritual experiences do not come to us very frequently. And when they do, they are generally for our own edification, instruction, or correction. The Spirit does not get our attention by shouting or shaking us with a heavy hand. Rather it whispers. It caresses so gently that if we are preoccupied we may not feel it at all.
I have heard President Marion G. Romney once counsel mission presidents and their wives in Geneva, “I do not tell all I know; I have never told my wife all I know, for I found out that if I talked too lightly of sacred things, thereafter the Lord would not trust me. Do not be impatient to gain great spiritual knowledge. Let it grow, help it grow, but do not force it or you will open the way to be misled.
“Dramatic and miraculous answers to prayer may come, but they are the exceptions. Even at the highest levels of responsibility in this kingdom of God, which is being built up upon the earth, the voice is still small… My testimony is that the Lord is speaking to you! But with the deafening decibels of today’s environment, all too often we fail to hear him” (Graham W. Doxey, Ensign, November 1991, 25).
Elder Harold B. Lee told the following story about Bishop John Wells when he was a member of the Quorum of the Twelve: “A few weeks ago, Pres. McKay related to the Twelve an interesting experience, and I asked him yesterday if I might repeat it to you this morning. “He said it is a great thing to be responsive to the whisperings of the spirit, and we know that when these whisperings come it is a gift and our privilege to have them. They come when we are relaxed and not under pressure of appointments… the President then took occasion to relate an experience in the life of Bishop John Wells, former member of the Presiding Bishopric. A son of Bishop Wells was killed in Emigration Canyon on a railroad track. Brother John Wells was a great detail man and prepared many of the reports we are following up on now. His boy was run over by a freight train. Sister Wells was inconsolable. She mourned during the three days prior to the funeral, received no comfort at the funeral and was in a rather serious state of mind.
One day soon after the funeral services while she was lying on her bed relaxed, still mourning, she said that her son appeared to her and said, ‘Mother do not mourn, do not cry. I am alright.’ He told her that she did not understand how the accident happened and explained that he had given the signal to the engineer to move on, and than made the usual effort to catch the railing on the freight train, but as he attempted to do so his foot caught on a root and he failed to catch the hand rail, and his body fell under the train. It was clearly an accident.
Now listen. He said that as soon as he realized that he was in another environment he tried to see his father, but he couldn’t reach him. His father was so busy with the duties in his office he could not respond to his call. Therefore, he had come to his mother. He said to her, ‘You tell father that all is well with me, and I want you not to mourn any more.’
“Then the President made the statement that the point he had in mind was that when we are relaxed in a private room we are more susceptible to those things; and that so far as he was concerned, his best thoughts come after he gets up in the morning and is relaxed and thinking about the duties of the day; that impressions come more clearly, as if it were to hear a voice. Those impressions are right. If we are worried about something and upset in our feelings, the inspiration does not come. If we so live that our minds are free from worry and our conscience is clear and our feelings are right toward one another, the operation of the spirit of the Lord upon our spirit is as real as when we pick up the telephone; but when they come, we must be brave enough to take the suggested actions. The Lord will approve it and the brethren will approve it, and we know it is right. He said, it is a great consolation in this upset world today to know that our Savior is directing this work. Then the President concluded: ‘I value that testimony,’ If you forget all else I have said, you remember that lesson and that admonition” (Prayer address to Seminary and Institute faculty, BYU, 6 July 1956, 14-16).
3 Nephi 11:7 Who speaks the words “Behold my Beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased?” One of the conditions of the fall was to be cast out of God’s presence, therefore since the fall “no man hath seen God (the Father) at any time, except he hath born record of the Son” (JST, John 1:19). The Father has never dealt with man directly and personally since the fall, and he never appeared except to introduce and bear record of the Son (Joseph Fielding Smith, Doctrines of Salvation, 1:27). “A general consideration of scriptural evidence leads to the conclusion that God the Eternal Father has manifested Himself to earthly prophets or revelators on very few occasions, and then principally to attest the divine authority of His Son, Jesus Christ’’( James E. Talmage, Jesus the Christ).
Occasions when the Father has spoken directly to man include: 1. At the baptism of Christ (Matthew 3:7) 2. At the Mount of Transfiguration (Matthew 17:5) 3. At the Triumphal Entry (John 12:28) 4. At the Sacred Grove (JSH 1:17) 5. At the visit of Christ to the Americas (3 Nephi 11:7) To teach repentance and baptism (2 Nephi 31:11, 15)
3 Nephi 11:8 Sometimes we just need to “not open our mouths” or to “Righteously Shut-up!” 3 Nephi 11:11 “The essence of His earthly mission” Just fifty-six words which teach of His earthy mission!
3 Nephi 11:14-15 D&C 45; “It can hardly be accepted as a fact, that these wounds have remained in his hands, side, and feet all through the centuries from the time of his crucifixion and will remain until his Second Coming. But they will appear to the Jews as a witness against their fathers and their stubbornness in following the teachings of their fathers" (Joseph Fielding Smith, D.S. 2:291-92).(3 Nephi 17:25) There were 2,500 people, yet the Lord worked with them “one by one.” Faithful servants nourish by focusing on the individual. God loves us one by one’ (Alexander B. Morrison, Ensign, May 1992, 14). “All” had gone forth! If each person would have shared ten seconds with the Savior it would have taken 7 hours!
3 Nephi 11:14-17 “The Wounds in His Hands and Feet and Side” Elder Jeffrey Holland taught that Jesus Christ’s mortal wounds are tokens of His sacrifice: He who yet bears the scars of our forgiveness, the lesions of His love and humility, the torn flesh of obedience and sacrifice (“Teaching, Preaching, Healing,” Ensign, Jan 2003, 42).
It is a significant and hopeful fact that it is the wounded Christ who comes to our rescue. He who bears the scars of sacrifice, the lesions of love, the emblems of humility and forgiveness is the Captain of our Soul. That evidence of pain in mortality is undoubtedly intended to give courage to others who are also hurt and wounded by life, perhaps even in the house of their friends (Jeffrey R. Holland, Christ and the New Covenant, 259).
3Nephi 11:17 What is the meaning of the word “Hosanna?” It is a plea meaning “save now.” It was a “cry” of the multitude as they joined in our Lords triumphal procession into Jerusalem” (Merrill F. Unger, New Unger’s Bible Dictionary, 589). Matt.21:9, 15; Psalm 118:25 (Save us, or save us please, Grant us salvation).
3 Nephi 11:8, 12, 17, 19 How should we act when we go before the Lord? While great reverence is appropriate in chapels and temples, specific protocol is necessary in certain circumstances. When the prophet comes into the room the appropriate protocol is to stand, but when we go to the Lord we do so on our knees, with heads bowed low. “God must be approached carefully, respectfully, and with great preparation” (Howard W. Hunter, Ensign, November 1977), 52).
3 Nephi 11:21 “Power that you should baptize this people” Often times L.D.S had been baptized in conjunction with important milestones, (examples – marriage, entering the United Order, improvement of health). Re-baptisms were recorded on membership records. The First Presidency was concerned that some members were substituting re-baptism for true repentance. Re-baptisms were done away with in 1897.
3 Nephi 11:28 “Contention... is of the devil” (Mosiah 4:14). “ I pray that we may be true to our covenants, true to each other; that we will cast out of our hearts all that is evil, that we will not speak evil one of another, or be given to backbiting or contention or strife, for the spirit of wickedness destroys faith and tends to divide and separate instead of uniting and strengthening the people” (Joseph F. Smith, CR, October 1913, 74).
Nephi and everyone else was baptized again. The church among the Nephites before the coming of Christ was not in it’s fullness and was under the Law of Moses. The Savior started a new organization through baptism. Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery were baptized more than once also (A.T.G.Q. 3:205-6). 3 Nephi 11:32, “This is my Doctrine!” Clearly the foundational doctrine of baptism is at the heart of Christ’s saving ministry, for he repeated the phrase “my doctrine” --- particularly as applied to baptism ---at least eight times in his unequivocal counsel to the Nephites.