Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Love Your Enemies

D&C 58:26-33
for behold it is not meet
that I should command in all things
for he that is compelled in all things
the same is a slothful
and not a wise servant
wherefore he receiveth no reward 
verily I say
men should be anxiously engaged in a good cause
and do many things of their own free will
and bring to pass much righteousness
for the power is in them
wherein they are agents unto themselves
and inasmuch as men do good
they shall in nowise lose their reward 
but he that doeth not anything until he is commanded
and receiveth a commandment with doubtful heart
and keepeth it with slothfulness
the same is damned 
who am I
that made man
saith the Lord
that will hold him guiltless
that obeys not my commandments
who am I
saith the Lord
that have promised
and have not fulfilled 
I command
and men obey not
I revoke
and they receive not the blessing 
then they say in their hearts
this is not the work of the Lord
for his promises are not fulfilled
but wo unto such
for their reward lurketh beneath
and not from above
The Lord has commanded, in triplicate, that we shall give to every man that asks (Luke 6:30; Matthew 5:42; 3 Nephi 12:42).  He did not command that we should give only when moved upon by the Spirit, for those who must be micromanaged or directly commanded in the keeping of his law and commandments are slothful and unwise and doubt-filled servants who are damned and receive no reward from him.  Recall Joseph wrote: “[D]oubt and faith do not exist in the same person at the same time” (LoF 6).

How much and how, therefore, shall we give to those who ask, including our enemies?

Granting their request or demand for substance, so long as we have physical capacity to do so, is a commandment from the Lord.  Therefore, the question is really “how much and how shall we render to the Lord according to his commandment?”

Would you think, perhaps, “give the Lord whatever he asks whenever he asks however he asks” is a wise policy?  Might you even think, perhaps, “give the Lord more than what he asks, as a token of love for him?”

Therefore, how shall we give to every man who asks, even our enemies and our persecutors, who spitefully use us and ask us for all that we possess, even our very lives?  Even as we would to the Lord, for it is the Lord who asks it of us.
3 Nephi 12:38-48
and behold
it is written
an eye for an eye
and a tooth for a tooth
but I say unto you
that ye shall not resist evil
but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek
turn to him the other also
and if any man will sue thee at the law
and take away thy coat
let him have thy cloak also
and whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile
go with him twain
give to him that asketh thee
and from him that would borrow of thee
turn thou not away
and behold
it is written also
that thou shalt love thy neighbor
and hate thine enemy
but behold I say unto you
love your enemies
bless them that curse you
do good to them that hate you
and pray for them who despitefully use you
and persecute you
that ye may be the children of your Father who is in heaven
for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil
and on the good
therefore those things
which were of old time
which were under the law
in me are all fulfilled
old things are done away
and all things have become new
therefore I would that ye should be perfect even as I
or your Father who is in heaven is perfect

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

The Way to Judge

In “There Are Save Two Churches Only,” we learned these things:
D&C 10:67-68
Behold, this is my doctrine—whosoever repenteth and cometh unto me, the same is my church.  Whosoever declareth more or less than this, the same is not of me, but is against me; therefore he is not of my church.
3 Nephi 14:12 Therefore, all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them, for this is the law and the prophets.
3 Nephi 15:9-10
Behold, I am the law, and the light. Look unto me, and endure to the end, and ye shall live; for unto him that endureth to the end will I give eternal life.  Behold, I have given unto you the commandments; therefore keep my commandments. And this is the law and the prophets, for they truly testified of me.
2 Nephi 30:1-2
For behold, except ye shall keep the commandments of God ye shall all likewise perish; and because of the words which have been spoken ye need not suppose that the Gentiles are utterly destroyed.  For behold, I say unto you that as many of the Gentiles as will repent are the covenant people of the Lord; and as many of the Jews as will not repent shall be cast off; for the Lord covenanteth with none save it be with them that repent and believe in his Son, who is the Holy One of Israel.
1 Nephi 14:10 Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth.
In “The Teaching that Characterizes the Church of God,” we learned this:
Mosiah 25:22 And thus, notwithstanding there being many churches they were all one church, yea, even the church of God; for there was nothing preached in all the churches except it were repentance and faith in God.
In “The Function of the Priesthood,” we learned this:
Alma 13:1, 6
And again, my brethren, I would cite your minds forward to the time when the Lord God gave these commandments unto his children; and I would that ye should remember that the Lord God ordained priests, after his holy order, which was after the order of his Son, to teach these things unto the people.  ...  And thus being called by this holy calling, and ordained unto the high priesthood of the holy order of God, to teach his commandments unto the children of men, that they also might enter into his rest….
Mosiah 23:14 And also trust no one to be your teacher nor your minister, except he be a man of God, walking in his ways and keeping his commandments.
And we also learned, through multiple citations, by both precept and example, that the Ten Commandments given to Moses at Sinai are not sufficient, having been superseded by the Sermon on the Mount: 3 Nephi chapters 12 through 14.  The Sermon is the current law and commandments unto all mankind.  Torah does not suffice.

Now we get to the standard by which we may judge righteously.
Moroni 7:16-17
wherefore I show unto you the way to judge
for every thing which inviteth to do good
and to persuade to believe in Christ
is sent forth by the power and gift of Christ
wherefore ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of God
but whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do evil
and believe not in Christ
and deny him
and serve not God
then ye may know with a perfect knowledge it is of the devil
Everything which invites to do good and to persuade to believe in Christ is of God.

Since the law of God - the Golden Rule - defines good, and since to believe in Christ means fully relying upon him, confidently trusting him, and therefore doing all things whatsoever he commands without regard to your relationships, your career, your reputation, your holdings, and even your own life, this is equivalent to saying everything which invites you to obey the law of God and to persuade others to keep commandments of Christ is of God.

Everything which persuades men to do evil and believe not in Christ and deny him and serve not God is of the devil.

Since anything short of the Golden Rule is evil, this is equivalent to saying everything which persuades men to do to others what they do not want others to do to them, and to not fully rely upon Christ, and to reject Christ or any of Christ’s commands, teachings, or sayings, and to not keep the commandments of God, is of the devil.

There is a theme to all of this, for there is but one purpose for which we are in this world.
Abraham 3:25 [W]e will prove them herewith, to see if they will do all things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them[.]
That’s all we are here for: to do the commandments of God and endure in so doing until the end shall come, and to teach others to do likewise.
2 Nephi 26:27-32
[H]e hath commanded his people
that they should persuade all men to repentance

He commandeth
that there shall be no priestcrafts
for behold priestcrafts are that men preach
and set themselves up for a light unto the world
that they may get gain
and praise of the world
but they seek not the welfare of Zion.
[T]he Lord God hath given a commandment
that all men should have charity which charity is love.
[T]he laborer in Zion shall labor for Zion
for if they labor for money they shall perish
And again, the Lord God hath commanded
that men should not murder
that they should not lie
that they should not steal
that they should not take the name of the Lord their God in vain
that they should not envy
that they should not have malice
that they should not contend one with another
that they should not commit whoredoms
and that they should do none of these things
for whoso doeth them shall perish
And, again, speaking of the Sermon, the Lord said:
JST Matthew 5:21-22
Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments
and shall teach men so to do
he shall in no wise be saved in the kingdom of heaven
but whosoever shall do
and teach these commandments of the law
until it be fulfilled

the same shall be called great
and shall be saved in the kingdom of heaven
for I say unto you
except your righteousness shall exceed that of the scribes
and Pharisees
ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven

Sunday, June 18, 2017

The Function of the Priesthood

In “There Are Save Two Churches Only,” we learned this:
D&C 10:67-68
Behold, this is my doctrine—whosoever repenteth and cometh unto me, the same is my church.  Whosoever declareth more or less than this, the same is not of me, but is against me; therefore he is not of my church.
And we learned this:
1 Nephi 14:10 And he said unto me: Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth.
In “The Teaching that Characterizes the Church of God,” we learned that the teaching that characterizes the church of God is this:
Mosiah 25:22 And thus, notwithstanding there being many churches they were all one church, yea, even the church of God; for there was nothing preached in all the churches except it were repentance and faith in God.
This, of course, makes sense, since Christ also said this:
3 Nephi 11:31-40
Behold
verily verily I say unto you
I will declare unto you my doctrine
and this is my doctrine
and it is the doctrine which the Father hath given unto me
and I bear record of the Father
and the Father beareth record of me
and the Holy Ghost beareth record of the Father and me
and I bear record that the Father commandeth all men everywhere
to repent and believe in me
and whoso believeth in me and is baptized the same shall be saved
and they are they who shall inherit the kingdom of God
and whoso believeth not in me and is not baptized shall be damned

verily verily I say unto you that this is my doctrine
and I bear record of it from the Father
and whoso believeth in me believeth in the Father also
and unto him will the Father bear record of me
for he will visit him with fire and with the Holy Ghost
and thus will the Father bear record of me
and the Holy Ghost will bear record unto him of the Father and me
for the Father and I and the Holy Ghost are one

and again I say unto you
ye must repent
and become as a little child
and be baptized in my name
or ye can in nowise receive these things

and again I say unto you
ye must repent
and be baptized in my name
and become as a little child
or ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God

verily verily I say unto you that this is my doctrine
and whoso buildeth upon this buildeth upon my rock
and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them
and whoso shall declare more or less than this
and establish it for my doctrine
the same cometh of evil
and is not built upon my rock
but he buildeth upon a sandy foundation
and the gates of hell stand open to receive such
when the floods come and the winds beat upon them
Repent means turning from one’s own ways and thoughts to voluntarily bringing one’s thoughts and behavior into conformity law and commandments of God, which one will only do if one fully trusts Jesus Christ, which is what it means to believe in him.  Who but they who believe Jesus, and believe in Jesus, trusting in him, who place their faith and confidence in him, would give to every man that asks, yield in any lawsuit without a fight, not store up temporal substance for himself in this world, but distribute his substance to the poor, &c., as Christ commanded in the Sermon?

Which brings us to the next question: if the church of Christ is defined as all they who repent and keep the commandments of Jesus as delivered in the Sermon, that being the current law and commandments of God unto all mankind, and come to him, and if there is nothing preached among those who are of the church of Christ save it be repentance and faith in Christ, then what is the function of the priesthood of the church of Christ?

The short answer is: the function of the priesthood of the church of Christ is to teach the commandments of God that men may come into his presence in the eternal world through obedience to them.  Today that entails teaching the Sermon, which is the strait and narrow way.

Alma 13:1, 6 - high priests are called for the purpose of teaching the commandments of God unto men that they may enter into the rest of God as the high priests have.

D&C 84:23-24 - the rest of God is the fulness of his glory, apparently including his presence (see also D&C 76:116-118).

D&C 22 - nobody can enter in at the strait gate by the Law of Moses, which has been done away.

1 Nephi 13:35-36, 40-41; 2 Nephi 25:27-30; Mosiah 13:27; Alma 13:24, 16:16-17, 25:15; 3 Nephi 1:24-25, 12:19, 12:46-47, 15:1-10; 4 Nephi 1:12; Luke 16:16 - the Law of Moses is fulfilled and done away; the Sermon is the law and commandments of God unto all mankind: the rock of Christ, and his salvation.
Mosiah 23:14 And also trust no one to be your teacher nor your minister, except he be a man of God, walking in his ways and keeping his commandments.
Since we have the commandments of Jesus in Luke 6:20-49, Matthew chapters 5 through 7, and 3 Nephi chapters 12 through 14, it is not hard to discern who walks in the ways of God and keeps his commandments, so long as we are ourselves walking in the ways of God and keeping his commandments.

Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Teaching that Characterizes the Church of God

In "There Are Save Two Churches Only," it was established that the church of Jesus Christ is whosoever repents and comes to him - all they who hear and believe his commands, turn from their disobedience and obey his commands, and endure in faith in keeping his commands until they come to him.

Another way to say that is that the church of Jesus is all they who repent and believe in him.

Because there are only two churches, all who are not of Jesus's church - all who hear and do not turn away from their disobedience to walk in his commandments and do not believe in him - are of the church of the devil, which church is the mother of abominations, the whore of all the earth.

The hallmark of the church of Christ, then, is not whether they corporately believe in this-or-that "doctrines," or mysteries, or follow any mortal leader.  Christ himself said that his sheep hear his voice and will not follow another.  Christ's church is identified by their behavior - adherence to an ideology - and not their beliefs, save it be in Christ.

Therefore what teaching characterizes the followers of Christ?
Mosiah 25:22 And thus, notwithstanding there being many churches they were all one church, yea, even the church of God; for there was nothing preached in all the churches except it were repentance and faith in God.
Nothing - not mysteries, nor "doctrines" - but repentance and faith in God: repent, believe in Christ, and endure in faith in the keeping of his commandments until the end: this is the teaching that characterizes the church of Jesus.

If this is the "Awakening," then let us therefore awaken to our state of awful wickedness and repent of all our sins and execute our Lord's commandments - just as literally and fully as we would like him to perform his promised blessings to us - and teach others to do likewise, that we may be his church and his people and not be cast out as salt that has lost its savor, to be trodden under foot of men.

There Are Save Two Churches Only

D&C 10:67-68
Behold, this is my doctrine—whosoever repenteth and cometh unto me, the same is my church.  Whosoever declareth more or less than this, the same is not of me, but is against me; therefore he is not of my church.
"Repent" means "to think differently, to reconsider, to change your mind," while "sin" means "to miss the mark."  We know from John that "sin is the transgression of the law," therefore we know that "the mark" is the law of God, and we know that the law is Jesus, as he said:
3 Nephi 14:12 Therefore, all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them, for this is the law and the prophets.
3 Nephi 15:9-10
Behold, I am the law, and the light. Look unto me, and endure to the end, and ye shall live; for unto him that endureth to the end will I give eternal life.  Behold, I have given unto you the commandments; therefore keep my commandments. And this is the law and the prophets, for they truly testified of me.
Therefore, "repent" means to freely and voluntarily bring your mind and behavior into conformity with the law and commandments of Christ.  If you want to enter his covenant and be his church, you must keep Jesus’s commandments if you know them.

These are the commandments of Jesus Christ (those put forth in parable are omitted).
  • Love your enemies (Luke 6:27, Luke 6:35, Matthew 5:44).
  • Do good to those that hate you (Luke 6:27, Matthew 5:44).
  • Bless those that curse you (Luke 6:28, Matthew 5:44).
  • Pray for those which spitefully use you and persecute you (Luke 6:28, Matthew 5:44).
  • If someone strikes you on one cheek, turn the other to him also (Luke 6:29, Matthew 5:39).
  • If someone takes away your cloak, do not tell him he cannot also take your coat (Luke 6:29).
  • If someone sues you at law and takes away your coat, let him have your cloak also (Matthew 5:40).
  • Give to every man that asks (Luke 6:30, Matthew 5:42).
  • Do not ask for your stuff back from whomever takes it (Luke 6:30).
  • Every last thing you wish people would do to you, do exactly those things to others (Luke 6:31, Matthew 7:12).
  • Do good (Luke 6:35).
  • Lend to all, hoping that you don't get paid back (Luke 6:35, Matthew 5:42) and don't ask to be paid back (Luke 6:30).
  • Be as merciful as God is (Luke 6:36).
  • Be perfect as your Father in heaven is perfect (Matthew 5:48).
  • Let your light so shine before men that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father in heaven (Matthew 5:16).
  • If you bring a gift to God to the altar of prayer and remember your brother has something against you, leave the gift, go and be reconciled with your brother, and then come and offer your gift (Matthew 5:23-24).
  • Placate your opponent swiftly while you are in conflict with him (Matthew 5:25-26).
  • Neither anger nor despising nor reviling nor contention nor lust shall we allow to enter our heart.  This is how we take up our cross (3 Nephi 12:29-30).
  • Do not swear upon anything to enhance your credibility, but let your words be "yes, yes," or "no, no" (Matthew 5:33-37).
  • Do not resist evil - do not fight back, do not defend yourself (Matthew 5:39).
  • If anyone forces you to go a mile, go with him two miles (Matthew 5:41).
  • Do not do your alms for the purpose of others knowing you give alms (Matthew 6:1).
  • Do not do your alms for the purpose of getting people to think better of you (Matthew 6:2).
  • Keep your almsgiving a secret (Matthew 6:3-4).
  • Do not pray for the purpose of others seeing you pray (Matthew 6:5).
  • Pray in your closed closet in secret where nobody can see you (Matthew 6:6).
  • When you pray do not use empty repetitions, as is practiced in some Eastern religions (Matthew 6:7).
  • Pray according to this pattern: Our Father in heaven, may your name be hallowed; may your kingdom arrive, may your will be done on earth like it is done in heaven.  Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our debts to you just like we forgive our own debtors' debts to us.  And do not lead us into temptation, but rescue us from evil, for the kingdom and the power and the glory is yours forever.  Amen (Matthew 6:9-13; Luke 11:2-4).
  • When you fast do not make a public show about it so that people know you are fasting (Matthew 6:16).
  • When you fast anoint your head and wash your face so that nobody knows you are fasting (Matthew 6:17-18).
  • Do not store up for yourself in this world goods, nor clothes, nor food, nor money, nor any other resource which can be corrupted or stolen (Matthew 6:19).
  • Give your goods or clothes or food or money or other corruptible or steal-able resources that you possess more than your actual needs to those who have need of them (Matthew 6:20-21).
  • Do not concern yourself at all about what you shall eat, or what you shall drink (Matthew 6:25, 31).
  • Do not concern yourself at all about your body, such as what clothes you will wear (Matthew 6:25, 31).
  • Work for the kingdom of God, and for his righteousness, above all other considerations - that is, do and teach these commandments as your first concern - and food, drink, and clothing shall be given to you with no effort on your own part (Matthew 6:33).
  • Don't think about - do not plan for - tomorrow (Matthew 6:34).
  • Do not judge nor condemn, so that you will not be judged nor condemned (Matthew 7:1, Luke 6:37).
  • Forgive and you will be forgiven (Luke 6:37, Matthew 6:14).
  • Give and more will be given to you by people (Luke 6:38).
  • The same standard of judgement by which you judge how much you give to others shall be used to measure out what is given to you (Luke 6:38, Matthew 7:2)
  • Beware of false prophets (Matthew 7:15-20, Luke 6:43-45).
  • You do not get into the kingdom of God, and neither do you know him, without doing these things (Matthew 7:21-23).
  • If you do these things you build on his rock (Matthew 7:24-25, Luke 6:47-48).
  • If you do not do these things you do not build upon his rock (Matthew 7:26-27, Luke 6:49).
The Lord will covenant with you if you will repent and therefore keep his commandments always.
2 Nephi 30:1-2
For behold, except ye shall keep the commandments of God ye shall all likewise perish; and because of the words which have been spoken ye need not suppose that the Gentiles are utterly destroyed.  For behold, I say unto you that as many of the Gentiles as will repent are the covenant people of the Lord; and as many of the Jews as will not repent shall be cast off; for the Lord covenanteth with none save it be with them that repent and believe in his Son, who is the Holy One of Israel.
And if you elect to not repent and keep his commandments, since you now know them, then you are not of his church, but you are of the whore of all the earth.
1 Nephi 14:10 And he said unto me: Behold there are save two churches only; the one is the church of the Lamb of God, and the other is the church of the devil; wherefore, whoso belongeth not to the church of the Lamb of God belongeth to that great church, which is the mother of abominations; and she is the whore of all the earth.
A whore only wants you around as long as she’s profiting from you, and as long as she is profiting from you, she pretends to love you, but inwardly she despises you.  As soon as she stops profiting from your presence she wants you gone.  So also are they who are of her.
Ezekiel 33:31 They love with their mouths, but their hearts follow the profits.

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Obeying Orders

For those who were ever in the military: if your commanding officer were to give you a facially lawful general order that you were to perform certain specific actions every time certain specific conditions were fulfilled, you would have obeyed that order without fail so long as you had physical ability to obey, right?

If so, then can there be a principled objection to obeying the Savior's commandment that we shall give to every man that asks us, just to pick one commandment that is specific, actionable, categorical, and given in triplicate?  See Luke 6:30, Matthew 5:42, and 3 Nephi 12:42.

Is not the substance of the earth his?  And are you not merely a steward over your possessions?  Therefore what could possibly justify your insubordination to his command?

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Repent of All Your Sins: The Sermon at Bountiful

--A Preliminary Observation on the Doctrine of Christ--

To the disciples he both called and chose to minister unto the people, Jesus said there should be no disputations among them, as there had hitherto been, neither should there be disputations concerning the points of his doctrine, as there had hitherto been.  He gave the baptismal formula and pattern.  He said that those having the spirit of contention are not of him, but of the devil, who is the father of contention (contesting, disputing, &c.).  He said it is his doctrine that such things should be done away.  He then gave a short declaration of his doctrine.

"And this is my doctrine, and it is the doctrine which the Father hath given unto me; and I bear record of the Father, and the Father beareth record of me, and the Holy Ghost beareth record of the Father and me; and I bear record that the Father commandeth all men, everywhere, to repent and believe in me.  And whoso believeth in me, and is baptized, the same shall be saved; and they are they who shall inherit the kingdom of God.  And whoso believeth not in me, and is not baptized, shall be damned."

That is his doctrine.

"Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and I bear record of it from the Father; and whoso believeth in me believeth in the Father also; and unto him will the Father bear record of me, for he will visit him with fire and with the Holy Ghost.  And thus will the Father bear record of me, and the Holy Ghost will bear record unto him of the Father and me; for the Father, and I, and the Holy Ghost are one."

It is to be noted the phrase "baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost" does not appear here.  Therefore the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost is not part of this statement of his doctrine.  Here, he speaks of the Father visiting someone with fire and with the Holy Ghost, and that this visitation with fire and with the Holy Ghost is the Father bearing record, or testifying, of the Son.  It cannot be established on the words being used here that this visitation with fire and with the Holy Ghost is identical to the baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost, and there is evidence from 3 Nephi 12 and the gospel of Matthew that they are not the same thing.

"And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and become as a little child, and be baptized in my name, or ye can in nowise receive these things."

"These things" appears to be a reference to the Father "visit[ing one] with fire and with the Holy Ghost" and thus bearing record of the Son, and the Holy Ghost bearing record of the Father and the Son.

"And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and be baptized in my name, and become as a little child, or ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God."

If we assume there is only one baptism being spoken of, then the difference in the ordering of the elements seems potentially contradictory.  On the other hand, if we grant that the different ordering of elements potentially signifies different baptisms, then we appear to have here, in the doctrine of Christ, two baptisms by water.

In the potential first instance of baptism, we repent and become as a little child - believing, trusting, without malice - and be baptized in the name of Christ, and if we do so the Father visits us with fire and with the Holy Ghost, thus bearing record of the Son, and the Holy Ghost bears record of the Father and the Son.

In the potential second instance of baptism, we repent, are baptized in the name of Christ, and become as a little child - believing, trusting, without malice - to perhaps be made fit to potentially inherit the kingdom of God.

This reading is possible on the words being used, and cannot be contradicted without adding, subtracting, or moving words or fixing meanings where the words used can have multiple meanings.

"Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and whoso buildeth upon this buildeth upon my rock, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them."

See the last few verses of Luke 6, Matthew 7, and 3 Nephi 14.

"And whoso shall declare more or less than this, and establish it for my doctrine, the same cometh of evil, and is not built upon my rock; but he buildeth upon a sandy foundation, and the gates of hell stand open to receive such when the floods come and the winds beat upon them."

And he instructed his disciples to go forth and teach his words among the people in all the land.

=====

--The Sermon at Bountiful: Introduction--

In the last post, I performed a detailed analysis of the actual words used in 3 Nephi 11, noting that therein was spoken of a "visitation with fire and with the Holy Ghost" whereby the Father would bear record of the Son, but the "baptism of fire and of the Holy Ghost" was not mentioned, thus suggesting we are dealing with two different things.  I noted variances in the mentions of baptism that could be held to suggest references to at least two baptisms by water.

Let us then turn to the Savior's words to the multitude after he declared his doctrine to his disciples.

3 Nephi 12:1-2
And it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words
unto Nephi and to those who had been called
now the number of them who had been called
and received power and authority to baptize
was twelve
and behold he stretched forth his hand unto the multitude
and cried unto them
saying
blessed are ye if ye shall give heed unto the words of these twelve
whom I have chosen from among you
to minister unto you
and to be your servants
and unto them I have given power
that they may baptize you with water
and after that ye are baptized with water
behold I will baptize you with fire and with the Holy Ghost
therefore
blessed are ye if ye shall believe in me
and be baptized
after that ye have seen me
and know that I am
and again more blessed are they
who shall believe in your words
because that ye shall testify that ye have seen me
and that ye know that I am
yea blessed are they
who shall believe in your words
and come down into the depths of humility
and be baptized
for they shall be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost
and shall receive a remission of their sins.

To them whom he was physically present with, he says after they are baptized by the twelve disciples by water, that he, Jesus, would baptize them with fire and with the Holy Ghost.  Therefore blessed are they, who then were physically present with the Savior, if they should believe in him and be baptized after they have seen him and know that he exists.

Clearly the phrase "believe in me" means more than simply "believe that I exist."  As Abinadi used the phrase, to "believe in" something, such as a prophet's words, meant to trust in, to place confidence in, and therefore do, as the words instructed.  It seems here that Christ means the same thing by "believe in me," that is, to trust in him - rely upon him, depend upon him, have confidence in him, believe him - and do what he is saying to do, in particular, give heed to the words of the twelve and be baptized and testify of him and do what he is about to command them.

Next he says that those who believe in the words of this group, among whom the Savior was then physically present, are more blessed, because those whom the Savior was now among should testify that they have seen him and that they know that he exists.  They who believe in the words of this group who then come down into the depths of humility and are baptized shall be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost and shall receive a remission of their sins.

Note the difference.  Those to whom he was speaking, once they heeded the words of the twelve and were baptized would then be baptized by fire and by the Holy Ghost by Christ, thus becoming sanctified, holy, without spot, being one in Christ, sons of God.  Those who believed on the words of those to whom he was speaking would, if they came down into the depths of humility and were baptized, be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost and receive a remission of their sins.

This second group were to be more blessed by this, therefore there is a difference between the first and the second groups, and the difference appears to be that the first group would be baptized by fire and by the Holy Ghost, while the second group would be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost, and receive a remission of their sins.  Why this means the second group would be more blessed than the first is a mystery not clearly explained in the text, but that there is a difference is clearly stated.

This seems to accord with the doctrine of Christ as he explained it to his disciples, and also lend some potential fodder for thought if one should go back to 2 Nephi 31 and compare with the doctrine of Christ as outlined there.

Of interest therefore might be what the Savior means by "come down into the depths of humility."

2 Nephi 9:41-43
O then my beloved brethren
come unto the Lord the Holy One
remember that his paths are righteousness
behold the way for man is narrow
but it lieth in a straight course before him
and the keeper of the gate is the Holy One of Israel
and he employeth no servant there
and there is none other way save it be by the gate
for he cannot be deceived
for the Lord God is his name
and whoso knocketh to him will he open
and the wise
and the learned
and they that are rich
who are puffed up
because of their learning
and their wisdom
and their riches
yea they are they whom he despiseth
and save they shall cast these things away
and consider themselves fools before God
and come down in the depths of humility
he will not open unto them
but the things of the wise and the prudent shall be hid from them forever
yea that happiness which is prepared for the saints.

Riches (possessions above need), learning (knowledge of principles or facts received by instruction and study [not by direct experience]), and wisdom (plans for the temporal future) are what must be jettisoned to come down into the depths of humility; pretense to knowledge must give way to considering oneself a fool before God.

We are to esteem our fellows as ourselves, with no more lifting ourselves above our fellow man either in substance or learning or temporal preparations, and come down into the dust, and call upon the name of the Lord to be forgiven our iniquities, that we may also be visited with fire and with the Holy Ghost, and receive a remission of our sins.

(Note: Joseph said "to be righteous is to be just and merciful."  "Just" means "doing that which is agreed upon."  Therefore, the paths of the Lord, the Holy One of Israel, being righteousness means that his paths are doing that which is commanded and being merciful.)

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: The Beatitudes--

3 Nephi 12:3-12
Yea blessed are the poor in spirit who come unto me
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven
and again blessed are all they that mourn
for they shall be comforted
and blessed are the meek
for they shall inherit the earth
and blessed are all they who do hunger and thirst after righteousness
for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost
and blessed are the merciful
for they shall obtain mercy
and blessed are all the pure in heart
for they shall see God
and blessed are all the peacemakers
for they shall be called the children of God
and blessed are all they who are persecuted for my name’s sake
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven
and blessed are ye when men shall revile you
and persecute
and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely
for my sake
for ye shall have great joy
and be exceedingly glad
for great shall be your reward in heaven
for so persecuted they the prophets who were before you

The "poor in spirit" are they who have not eternal life, we learn in the D&C, for he that hath eternal life is rich.  "Come unto me" means to, well, come to him physically, if we're being perfectly literal, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven - they who come to him physically are made kings of heaven.

"And again" - so maybe he's talking about the same people, those that are poor in spirit who come unto him - "blessed are all they that mourn, for they shall be comforted."  Mourning about what, we don't know from the text.  Comforted how, we don't know either from the text.  We could speculate and say perhaps mourning for one's sins or also mourning for one's sinful and carnal nature, in which case the comfort might be brought firstly by the Holy Ghost which it is written is the first comforter, or secondly by the Holy Spirit of Promise, which it is written is the other comforter spoken of in John.  Maybe it means to mourn for the sins of the world.  Or, if we don't know, we leave it alone and move on.

"And blessed are the meek for they shall inherit the earth." "Meek" in the concordances for the Hebrew seems to mean "afflicted, miserable, gentle," preferring to bear injuries rather than to return them.  In the Greek concordances, it seems to mean "gentle."  It seems to me that the sense of the word is "gentle and forbearing."

"And blessed are all they that hunger and thirst after righteousness for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost."  As Joseph said, to be righteous is to be just and merciful; just means keeping one's agreements; to hunger and thirst after righteousness is, to me, read as seeking with all diligence for the state of being of righteous, being made perfectly just and merciful, seeking commands to fulfill and to execute mercy upon all.  Yes, there is a reference to Christ being "the Son of Righteousness" in the JST of Malachi, as well, so there is another meaning possible.

"Blessed are the merciful for they shall obtain mercy."  To be merciful is to let one's enemies go without harm nor reprisals when they are in your power and you could destroy them if you so desired.  Not only do you let them go, but you bless them in the bargain.  For we all start out enemies to God, as it is written.

"Blessed are all the pure in heart for they shall see God."  Pure, as opposed to corrupt.  The lexicon entry on this word is very interesting: https://www.blueletterbible.org/lang/lexicon/lexicon.cfm?Strongs=G2513&t=KJV

"Blessed are all the peacemakers for they shall be called the children of God."  In my reading, being a peacemaker is akin to being meek - to endure abuse and not send it out, to return good for evil.  In absorbing and forgiving evil and not sending evil out, but rather returning good for evil, we make peace.

"Blessed are all they who are persecuted for my name's sake for theirs is the kingdom of heaven."  The word "persecuted" in the Greek and the Hebrew means to be pursued, to be driven off, to be made to flee, to be pressured (in flight), to be harassed, to be molested, &c..  Being persecuted takes many forms.  Persecution may be to be the target of aggressive faultfinding and argumentation when one is on the Lord's errand.  It may be having one's words twisted into falsehoods and put back in one's mouth to make it look like you lied.  It may be someone taking advantage of you because you teach the word of God by pressing you to eat an unpleasant consequence of a commandment.

And so on.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: The Covenant People--

For those who are proposing to enter into a covenant with God in Boise, Idaho, in September, receiving the Book of Mormon and the New Testament (at least) as canon - as the rule of faith and practice - this is where the Sermon starts to get interesting.

3 Nephi 12:13-16
Verily verily I say unto you
I give unto you to be the salt of the earth
but if the salt shall lose its savor
wherewith shall the earth be salted
the salt shall be thenceforth good for nothing
but to be cast out
and to be trodden under foot of men
verily verily I say unto you
I give unto you to be the light of this people
a city that is set on a hill cannot be hid
behold do men light a candle
and put it under a bushel
nay but on a candlestick
and it giveth light to all that are in the house
therefore
let your light so shine before this people
that they may see your good works
and glorify your Father
who is in heaven

This is the announcement of the covenant to these people.  The people who were there in his presence at that time were to be accounted as the salt of the earth, as saviors of men.  But if they lost their saltness, that preservative quality and flavor for which salt is useful, then they would be good for nothing but to be cast out and stomped down under the foot of men.

We know from the rest of the Book of Mormon that the descendants of this people did, in fact, lose their savor, depart from the covenant - ceasing from doing the commandments of God, which commandments we are getting to - and were, in fact, cast out from the presence of God and were stomped down under the foot of men.

This is a warning to us, who propose to receive the same law and commandments.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: The Old Is Fulfilled, the New Is Here--

3 Nephi 12:17-20
Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets
I am not come to destroy
but to fulfil
for verily I say unto you
one jot nor one tittle hath not passed away from the law
but in me it hath all been fulfilled
and behold
I have given you the law and the commandments of my Father
that ye shall believe in me
and that ye shall repent of your sins
and come unto me with a broken heart and a contrite spirit
behold
ye have the commandments before you
and the law is fulfilled
therefore
come unto me and be ye saved
for verily I say unto you
that except ye shall keep my commandments
which I have commanded you at this time
ye shall in no case enter into the kingdom of heaven

Again, he is speaking directly to those he is with.  He has fulfilled the law (by which I understand him to be referring to the law of Moses).  He has already given the people the law and the commandments of his Father: that they should believe in Christ, that they should repent of their sins, and come unto Christ with a broken heart and a contrite spirit.  These are the law and commandments of the Father.

They have the commandments before them: repent of their sins, believe in Christ, and come unto him with a broken heart and a contrite spirit and be saved, and the law (by which I understand him to be referring to the law of Moses) is fulfilled (ie, the old covenant given through Moses is done).  Therefore come unto him (physically, if we're being perfectly literal) and be saved, he tells them: for if they do not keep his commandments which he has at this time (already - past tense) commanded them they shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven (and thus be unable to come unto him).

This is what this covenant people were to do; to live by these commandments which he had given them: believe in Christ (placing total faith and confidence and trust in him), repent of all their sins, and come to him (physically, if we're being perfectly literal) with a broken heart and a contrite spirit.

How interesting.  Weren't they there with him physically right then?  Maybe the other conditions - believing (placing their full faith and trust and reliance) in Christ, repenting of all their sins, and coming to him with a broken heart and a contrite spirit - weren't yet fulfilled, which seems to be what he said in 3 Nephi 12:1.  "Blessed are ye if ye shall believe in me after that ye have seen me and know that I am."

Maybe "come unto me" means to come unto him physically - through the veil, entering into the kingdom of heaven.

=====

--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 1--

Remember, the law and commandments of the Father is:
Believe in Christ.
Repent of your sins.
Come unto Christ with a broken heart and a contrite spirit.

I am persuaded that the word "repent" means to change our mind or alter our course by bringing our thoughts and deeds into conformity with the law of God.  I am persuaded that to "believe in" Christ means to have unwavering faith, trust, and confidence in him above any competing power; therefore, executing his words in all circumstances, through any trials or afflictions or exigencies.  I am persuaded that to "come unto Christ with a broken heart and a contrite spirit" means to approach him at the veil bearing for our sacrifice a broken heart and a contrite spirit, from thence to be received into the kingdom of heaven and thus come to him physically while yet in the flesh.

What follows are the sayings of Jesus Christ, wherein he explains what we must do to repent of all our sins.  If we believe in him, we will do all of these things always, and by doing all of these things always, come unto him with a broken heart and a contrite spirit.

3 Nephi 12:21-24
Ye have heard that it hath been said by them of old time
and it is also written before you
that thou shalt not kill
and whosoever shall kill
shall be in danger of the judgment of God
but I say unto you
that whosoever is angry with his brother
shall be in danger of his judgment
and whosoever shall say to his brother raca
shall be in danger of the council
and whosoever shall say thou fool
shall be in danger of hell fire
therefore
if ye shall come unto me
or shall desire to come unto me
and rememberest that thy brother hath aught against thee
go thy way unto thy brother
and first be reconciled to thy brother
and then come unto me with full purpose of heart
and I will receive you

Q: Who decides what it will take to be reconciled to your brother?
A: Your brother.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 2--

3 Nephi 12:25-26
Agree with thine adversary quickly
while thou art in the way with him
lest at any time he shall get thee
and thou shalt be cast into prison
verily verily I say unto thee
thou shalt by no means come out thence
until thou hast paid the uttermost senine
and while ye are in prison
can ye pay even one senine
verily verily I say unto you nay

Agree - be reconciled with, conciliate - your opponent in legal matters, when you come into conflict with him.

The point of this saying isn't that you can pay slowly while you are in prison, as our modern system makes it appear.  The point is you cannot pay while you are in prison - at all.

Jesus is instructing us to yield rather than contest or dispute or fight.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 3--

3 Nephi 12:27-30
Behold
it is written by them of old time
that thou shalt not commit adultery
but I say unto you
that whosoever looketh on a woman
to lust after her
hath committed adultery already in his heart
behold
I give unto you a commandment
that ye suffer none of these things to enter into your heart
for it is better that ye should deny yourselves of these things
wherein ye will take up your cross
than that ye should be cast into hell

Neither anger nor despising nor reviling nor contention nor lust shall we allow to enter our heart.  This is how we take up our cross.

3 Nephi 12:31-32
It hath been written
that whosoever shall put away his wife
let him give her a writing of divorcement
verily verily I say unto you
that whosoever shall put away his wife
saving for the cause of fornication
causeth her to commit adultery
and whoso shall marry her who is divorced committeth adultery

Note: Jesus is not saying you should divorce for the cause of fornication; he is not endorsing divorce for any cause.  He is saying that if you divorce for any other reason than your wife's fornication you cause your wife to commit adultery (ie, her blood comes upon you) and whoever marries a divorced woman commits adultery.

3 Nephi 12:33-37
And again it is written
thou shalt not forswear thyself
but shalt perform unto the Lord thine oaths
but verily verily I say unto you
swear not at all
neither by heaven
for it is God’s throne
nor by the earth
for it is his footstool
neither shalt thou swear by thy head
because thou canst not make one hair black or white
but let your communication be yea yea nay nay
for whatsoever cometh of more than these is evil

Jesus is telling us not to try to emotionally manipulate others into taking us more seriously, more sincere, more truthful, or whatever, by saying such things like "I swear I will do it" or "I swear it is true."  That is the purpose for which people swear.  Instead we will straightforwardly say "yes," or "no," without trying to enhance our credibility in their eyes by swearing upon things.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 4--

3 Nephi 12:38-48
And behold
it is written
an eye for an eye
and a tooth for a tooth
but I say unto you
that ye shall not resist evil
but whosoever shall smite thee on thy right cheek
turn to him the other also
and if any man will sue thee at the law
and take away thy coat
let him have thy cloak also
and whosoever shall compel thee to go a mile
go with him twain
give to him that asketh thee
and from him that would borrow of thee turn thou not away

Jesus is instructing us to yield in every conflict.  Give to every man that asks.  Lend to all comers.  If they seek to compel us, comply, do not fight.  If they strike us, turn the other cheek and do not revile.  If we're sued, let them have what they're suing us for without a fight.

and behold it is written also
that thou shalt love thy neighbor
and hate thine enemy
but behold
I say unto you
love your enemies
bless them that curse you
do good to them that hate you
and pray for them who despitefully use you and persecute you
that ye may be the children of your Father who is in heaven
for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good

Until we have perfect love through the redemption of Jesus Christ, we love our enemies by doing good to them, and we know what doing good to someone means.  Men cannot despitefully use you and persecute you unless you are doing what Christ said, thus placing yourself in their power, giving them what they spitefully ask for or falsely sue you for, complying with their compulsion, being smitten on the cheek, and so forth - for we are not to be respecters of men, even as God is no respecter of men, and we are to be sending forth good to all even as God sends forth good to all.

therefore
those things which were of old time
which were under the law
in me are all fulfilled
old things are done away
and all things have become new

The law (I understand him to be referring to that given through Moses) is fulfilled and thus done away.

therefore
I would that ye should be perfect
even as I
or your Father who is in heaven
is perfect

Because the law given through Moses is fulfilled and done away, Jesus has given us the law and commandments of his Father, and it is his will that we should be perfect, for the purpose of which he has given us these things, that we may walk entirely therein and be perfect, even as he, or our Father who is in heaven, is perfect and walks entirely herein.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 5--

In the last part, the Savior commanded those he was then present with that it was his will that they should be perfect, even as he, or their Father in heaven, is perfect. Later, we shall see these sayings apply to all mankind.

3 Nephi 13:1-24
1 Verily, verily, I say that I would that ye should do alms unto the poor; but take heed that ye do not your alms before men to be seen of them; otherwise ye have no reward of your Father who is in heaven.
2 Therefore, when ye shall do your alms do not sound a trumpet before you, as will hypocrites do in the synagogues and in the streets, that they may have glory of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward.
3 But when thou doest alms let not thy left hand know what thy right hand doeth;
4 That thine alms may be in secret; and thy Father who seeth in secret, himself shall reward thee openly.

Just as it is his will that we should be perfect, it is his will that we should do alms unto the poor; this is reminiscent of Benjamin's command that we shall not suffer the beggar to put up his petition to us in vain. Jesus warns us that those who do alms to be seen of men, to receive the praise, glory, or esteem of men for that which they do, have their reward in the praise they receive. And letting not your left hand (traditionally, the left is the side that the cursed find themselves on) know what your right hand (the side of the blessed) is doing could mean no reporting your alms on tithing slips nor tax returns nor attempting to get any credit nor return for them from men at all.

5 And when thou prayest thou shalt not do as the hypocrites, for they love to pray, standing in the synagogues and in the corners of the streets, that they may be seen of men. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward.
6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father who is in secret; and thy Father, who seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.
7 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen, for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.
8 Be not ye therefore like unto them, for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of before ye ask him.

Personal prayers shall be private, between us and the Lord, otherwise, they are not heard. And we are not to simply repeat the same things over and over (a practice of certain Eastern religions). God knows our needs before we ask him.

9 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name.
10 Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
11 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.
12 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.
13 For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever. Amen.
14 For, if ye forgive men their trespasses your heavenly Father will also forgive you;
15 But if ye forgive not men their trespasses neither will your Father forgive your trespasses.

Of interest is that "give us this day our daily bread" is missing - for, after all, God knows what our needs are before we ask him. Perhaps it is that we need not even ask, but submit to his will in all things rather than trying to get him to submit to ours, and he will give us what in his wisdom he sees that we need. And forgive us our debts - to whom are these debts owed? And of what do they consist? For if we forgive men their trespasses - apparently, including debts - then will God forgive us of ours, but if we do not, and instead insist on payment, or justice, neither does he forgive us of our trespasses.

16 Moreover, when ye fast be not as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance, for they disfigure their faces that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, they have their reward.
17 But thou, when thou fastest, anoint thy head, and wash thy face;
18 That thou appear not unto men to fast, but unto thy Father, who is in secret; and thy Father, who seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly.

Like our prayers and our alms, our fasting is to be in secret.

19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and thieves break through and steal;
20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal.
21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

Do not build up storage of goods / money / food / toys for yourself in this world - all the things moth or rust could corrupt or thieves could steal, which we store up so that we need not fear for future emergencies or unforeseen circumstance. The only reason to do so is to keep what you consider your own away from others, to make certain one always has enough for oneself, because you are fearful for the future. That kind of behavior shows that our desires, affections, confidence, and trust, is actually in our property and in men, and it is not in the Lord God; we are faithless. To lay up treasure for yourself in heaven, sell what you possess and give the proceeds of the sale to the poor, just as Jesus consistently instructed everyone: his disciples, the rich young ruler, and the Pharisees, all alike received this command. Distributing our substance to the poor is how we exchange our treasures in this world for treasure in heaven; the poor are the exchangers.

For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also; or, in other words, the world you choose to place your confidence / trust / faith in, as evidenced by whether you hoard or invest stuff for your own benefit and well-being in this world, or instead impart that which you possess as Jesus commands and thus gain treasure in heaven, is the world to which you are bound in your heart.

22 The light of the body is the eye; if, therefore, thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.
23 But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If, therefore, the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!
24 No man can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will hold to the one and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and Mammon.

This must be understood with the preceding verses, for it is a continuation of the theme of placing our faith / trust / confidence solely in Jesus in the keeping of his commandments, as opposed to relying on our own wisdom and temporal preparations, the substance of this world, and the human social, economic, and legal systems to ensure our continued, comfortable existence in the here-and-now. If you are focused upon Christ (which entails keeping his commandments, not merely paying lip service to the Lord to be seen of men in the manner of the hypocrites) then you will be filled with his light. If not, then not. You cannot build your holdings and security in this world and serve God simultaneously. The word "mammon" means the substance of this world to which men entrust their well-being, in which they place their confidence, such as goods, stocks, bonds, insurance, savings, property, businesses, food storage, and so on.

There is a second, hidden meaning to these verses. Note that Jesus has also used "the body" elsewhere in scripture as an oblique reference to his church, while the eyes are the seers for the body.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 6--

We previously saw in Part 5 that Christ commanded his people to give alms, pray, and fast, in secret, that others should not know that they do them.  We saw that he commanded his people to not build up storage of goods / food / money - anything that moth or rust can corrupt or thieves can break through to steal - for themselves and their own benefit, but rather to liquidate what they possessed above their needs and distribute the proceeds to the poor.  We saw that he told them that forgiveness is had from God as easily as they forgave others, and that if instead of forgiving they insisted on payment for debts owed to them or justice for wrongs done them, neither would God forgive them.  We saw that Jesus informed his people that it is impossible to both serve God and simultaneously build up temporal holdings and security.  We shall eventually see that his words apply to all that become aware of them.

To the twelve disciples he had called and chosen and given authority and power to baptize, he gave these instructions they were to observe, among them to remember his words, for they were chosen to minister to the people, to serve them and to stir them up in remembrance of the covenant and these commandments they were to keep.  After Christ ascended again to the Father, the twelve disciples ministered to the people the same words Jesus had spoken, nothing varying from what Jesus had spoken.

They were to be permanent ministers unto the people, and this is the manner of their life.

3 Nephi 13:25-34
25 And now it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words he looked upon the twelve whom he had chosen, and said unto them: Remember the words which I have spoken. For behold, ye are they whom I have chosen to minister unto this people. Therefore I say unto you, take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat, or what ye shall drink; nor yet for your body, what ye shall put on. Is not the life more than meat, and the body than raiment?
26 Behold the fowls of the air, for they sow not, neither do they reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feedeth them. Are ye not much better than they?
27 Which of you by taking thought can add one cubit unto his stature?
28 And why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin;
29 And yet I say unto you, that even Solomon, in all his glory, was not arrayed like one of these.
30 Wherefore, if God so clothe the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is cast into the oven, even so will he clothe you, if ye are not of little faith.
31 Therefore take no thought, saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, Wherewithal shall we be clothed?
32 For your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things.
33 But seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you.
34 Take therefore no thought for the morrow, for the morrow shall take thought for the things of itself. Sufficient is the day unto the evil thereof.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 7--

3 Nephi 14:1-12
1 And now it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words he turned again to the multitude, and did open his mouth unto them again, saying: Verily, verily, I say unto you, Judge not, that ye be not judged.
2 For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again.

The same judgement we apply to others shall be applied to us; the same standard of judgement by which we measure out what we will give to others when they ask shall be the same standard of judgement used to measure out that which we receive when we ask.  If we give all, we receive all.  If we give little, we receive little.  If we condemn the asker and withhold, then we shall be condemned and receive nothing when we ask.

3 And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother’s eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye?
4 Or how wilt thou say to thy brother: Let me pull the mote out of thine eye—and behold, a beam is in thine own eye?
5 Thou hypocrite, first cast the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast the mote out of thy brother’s eye.

The meaning of this parable is given from heaven predicated upon one's diligence in keeping the commandments of Jesus being herein commanded.

6 Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.

The meaning of this parable is given from heaven predicated upon one's diligence in keeping the commandments of Jesus being herein commanded.

7 Ask, and it shall be given unto you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you.
8 For every one that asketh, receiveth; and he that seeketh, findeth; and to him that knocketh, it shall be opened.
9 Or what man is there of you, who, if his son ask bread, will give him a stone?
10 Or if he ask a fish, will he give him a serpent?
11 If ye then, being evil, know how to give good gifts unto your children, how much more shall your Father who is in heaven give good things to them that ask him?
12 Therefore, all things whatsoever ye would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them, for this is the law and the prophets.

Every last thing you wish people would do to you, do exactly those things to them: this is the law of God and the message of the prophets.

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--The Sermon at Bountiful: Repent of All Your Sins, Part 8--

3 Nephi 14:13-27
13 Enter ye in at the strait gate; for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, which leadeth to destruction, and many there be who go in thereat;
14 Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.

We know from Nephi in 2 Nephi 32 that the strait gate is repentance from all sin and baptism, after which comes the visitation of fire and of the Holy Ghost wherein the Father bears record of the Son, according to the doctrine of Christ already covered in 3 Nephi 11.  The narrow way which leadeth unto life is the strict and diligent observance of these commandments, sayings, and teachings of Christ - yes, and also his word to us directly.

Anything else is the wide gate or the broad way.

15 Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.
16 Ye shall know them by their fruits. Do men gather grapes of thorns, or figs of thistles?
17 Even so every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit.
18 A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.
19 Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.
20 Wherefore, by their fruits ye shall know them.

The meaning of this parable is given from heaven predicated upon one's diligence in keeping the commandments of Jesus being herein commanded.

21 Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father who is in heaven.

The will of his Father who is in heaven is that you repent of all your sins and believe in Jesus Christ, keeping his commandments under all circumstances.  In other words, turn from your wicked ways and keep these commandments, teachings, and sayings, and endure to the end in faith on his name.

22 Many will say to me in that day: Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name, and in thy name have cast out devils, and in thy name done many wonderful works?
23 And then will I profess unto them: I never knew you; depart from me, ye that work iniquity.

Iniquity: inequality, injustice, disobedience, evil, malice, and so on.  "I never knew you" - I never met you; you never received me.

24 Therefore, whoso heareth these sayings of mine and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, who 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, who 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.

Anyone that hears these sayings of his and does them builds upon his rock, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against them.  Anyone that hears these sayings of his and does not do them shall fall.

3 Nephi 15:1 And now it came to pass that when Jesus had ended these sayings he cast his eyes round about on the multitude, and said unto them: Behold, ye have heard the things which I 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.

Anyone that remembers these sayings of his and does them shall Christ lift up at the last day.

And the reward is great.

John 14:15-24
15 ¶ If ye love me, keep my commandments.
16 And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever;
17 Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.
18 I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.
19 Yet a little while, and the world seeth me no more; but ye see me: because I live, ye shall live also.
20 At that day ye shall know that I am in my Father, and ye in me, and I in you.
21 He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him.
22 Judas saith unto him, not Iscariot, Lord, how is it that thou wilt manifest thyself unto us, and not unto the world?
23 Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.
24 He that loveth me not keepeth not my sayings: and the word which ye hear is not mine, but the Father’s which sent me.

Joseph Smith taught that this was a literal visit; the idea that the Father and the Son dwell in a man's heart is an old sectarian notion, and is false.

That's the carrot.

Here's the stick.

1 Nephi 13:40-41
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 are 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 Son of 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 to Jesus Christ or they cannot be saved, and they must come according to the words which shall be established by his mouth - not through a servant, but in his own proper person.  The Sermon is the words established by the mouth of the Lamb of God, made known in both the Book of Mormon and the New Testament.