Wednesday, October 5, 2016

By the Mouth of the Lamb

1 Nephi 13:40-41, Earliest Text

40 And the angel spake unto me, saying:
These last records which thou hast seen among the Gentiles
shall establish the truth of the first,
which is of the twelve apostles of the Lamb,
and shall make known the plain and precious things
which have been taken away from them
and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people
that the Lamb of God is the Eternal Father and the Savior of the world
and that all men must come unto him or they cannot be saved.

41 And they must come according to the words
which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb.
And the words of the Lamb shall be made known in the records of thy seed
as well as in the records of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
Wherefore they both shall be established in one,
for there is one God and one Shepherd over all the earth.

All men must come unto the Lamb or they cannot be saved, and they must come according to the words which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb in both the Book of Mormon and the New Testament.

So what are the words established by the mouth of the Lamb - that is, spoken by Christ himself in person - in both the Book of Mormon and the New Testament? Whatever those words are, all men must come unto Christ according to them - that is, all men must come to him by doing whatever those words say. Therefore, it seems to be of vital importance - if we desire to come unto Christ and be saved - that we identify the words Christ spoke in both the Book of Mormon and the New Testament, and do what he instructs us to do in those words.

Fortunately for us, Christ made it plain which words he spoke in both the Book of Mormon and the New Testament, by which all men must come unto him or they cannot be saved. The words he spoke in both the Book of Mormon and the New Testament are the words he spoke in person to the Nephites in 3 Nephi, chapters 12-14, the content of which closely follows the words he spoke to the Jews in person in Matthew, chapters 5-7. This is confirmed by what he said afterward.

3 Nephi 15:1, Earliest Text

And now it came to pass that when Jesus had ended these sayings,
he cast his eyes round about on the multitude and saith unto them:
Behold, ye have heard the things
which I have taught before I ascended to my Father.
Therefore whoso remembereth these sayings of mine and doeth them,
him will I raise up at the last day.

The words he spoke in person in both the Book of Mormon and the New Testament were the Sermon on the Mount. We may therefore see clearly that Christ's sayings in the Sermon on the Mount are not idealistic platitudes, but literal instructions to be performed by all men who want to come unto Christ and to be saved. They are to be remembered and actually done.

If we trust in Christ and desire to come unto him and be saved, we will actually do the things he said to do. If there is a conflict between Christ's instructions and any religious leader's teachings, or those of an official, philosopher, teacher, or scientist, we will choose to be faithful to Christ's words.

As an aside, the word "willing" as used in the sacramental prayers means "desiring with determination" or "determined to do" or "resolved." The word "witness" therein means "testify." The word "keep" therein means "perform," "do," "practice," "obey," or "fulfill." Each time you eat the bread, you testify to God, the Eternal Father, that you are resolved to actually obey Jesus's commandments.

After all...

3 Nephi 14:24-27, Earliest Text

24 Therefore whoso heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them,
I will liken him unto a wise man which built his house upon a rock.

25 And the rain descended and the floods came,
and the winds blew and beat upon that house.
And it fell not, for it was founded upon a rock.

26 And every one that heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them not
shall be likened unto a foolish man which built his house upon the sand.

27 And the rain descended and the floods came,
and the winds blew and beat upon that house.
And it fell, and great was the fall of it.