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Sunday Session 4, Talk 5 – Russell M. Nelson, Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
- Technology allows us to communicate rapidly.
- Even more amazing than modern technology is our opportunity to access information directly from heaven. Without: hardware, software or monthly service fees.
- It’s one of the most marvelous gifts the Lord has offered to mortals.
- Wrote down an idea for General Conference and arose from sleep and wrote down his impressions. The next morning he looked at the paper and his writing was illegible. He writes more carefully now.
- To access information from Heaven you need:
- have a firm faith and deep desire.
- Ask with a sincere heart and real intent having faith in Jesus Christ. Real intent means that one really intends to follow divine direction given.
- Study the matter diligently. Study it out in your mind. The ask God if it is right. If it is right, he will cause a burning in your bosom, therefore you shall FEEL that it is right.
- Know and obey the teachings of the Lord.
- The natural man knows very little of God and even less of his prophet.
- Paul wrote: “The natural man receives not the things of the spirit of God for they are foolishness unto him, neither can they know them because they are spiritually discerned.”
- Another Prophet said: “The natural man is an enemy to God and has been from the fall of Adam and will be forever and ever unless he yields to the enticings of the holy spirit and puteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord. And becometh as a Child: Submissive, Meek, Humble, Patient, Full of Love, Willing to submit of all things with the Lord see fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doths submit to his father.”
- Gives the Definition of Discernment:
- Gift of Discernment is a Spiritual is a supernal gift: it allows members of the Church to see things not visible and to feel things not tangible. Bishops are entitled to this gift to seek out the poor and care for the needy.
- Sisters may view trends in the world and detect those, however popular, are shallow or even dangerous.
- Members can discern between schemes that are flashy and fleeting – and those refinements which are uplifting and enduring.
- Discernment was implicit, in important instructions President John Taylor gave long ago, taught stake presidents, bishops and others :
“It is the right of those holding these positions to obtain the word of God with regard to the duties of their presidencies , that they more effectually carry out his holy purposes. None of the callings or positions int he priesthood are intended for the personal benefits, monuments and fame of those who hold them. But are expressly given to fulfill our purposes of our heavenly father and build up the kingdom of god upon the earth. We seek to understand the will of God and then carry it out and then see that it is carried by those over whom we have the charge.”
- To receiving revaluation unique to our needs and responsibilities, Certain Guidelines prevail:
- Develop faith, hope, charity and love with an eye single to the glory of god. then with your firm faith, virtue, knowledge, temperance, patience, brotherly kindness, godliness, charity, humility and diligence you may ask and you will receive, knock and it will be upon unto you.
- Revelation from god is always compatible with his eternal law, never contradicts his doctrine. facilitated by proper reverence for Deity. “I the Lord am merciful and gracious to those who fear me and delight to honor those who serve me in righteousness and in truth unto the end. Great shall be their reward, and eternal shall be their glory. to them i will reveal all mysteries. and my will concerning all things pertaining to my kingdom.
- Revelation need not come all at once, may be incremental:
“I will give unto the children of men, line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little there a little and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom, for unto him who receiveth, i will give more.”
- Patience, perseverance are part of our eternal progression
- Prophets describe what it feels like when receiving revelation:
- Joseph Smith and Oliver Cowdery: “The veil was taken from our minds and the eyes of our understanding were opened”
- Joseph F Smith: “As I pondered over these things which were written, the eyes of my understanding were opened and the spirit of the lord rested upon me”
- Salvation is an individual matter.
- Exaltation is a family matter.
- Family is the support for Salvation.
- The home is a laboratory for learning the gospel.
- Men need women to be exalted and visa versa.
- We cannot be released in our calling as parents.
- The Church is to assist, not replace parents in their responsibility to teach children.
- Parents have a sacred responsibility to teach Children of God.
- We’re taught to shun filth.
- We’re taught to honor thy parents.
- You can teach only by persuasion, long suffering, reproving, and more love.
- We’re all responsible for our own salvation.
These key points from his talk should echo in our minds. In the bigger scheme of things, we are merely stewards of our children on Earth. Our children are children of God entrusted under our car to teach them, to protect them and to love.
I also like his point on how Church is to assist and not replace parents. I believe that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints reinforces and strengthens our families. It should reiterate what is learned in the home and not be something new when taught during our Sunday Schools.
I’m sure you’ve heard this many, many times before, but I think it makes sense to repeat these words of wisdom:
If you were to erase everything your children learn in Sunday School and Church and strictly rely on what is taught at home, would they still have the same level of knowledge of the Gospel as if they did attend Church and Sunday School?
I hope so.