By Study and Also By Faith

An LDS (Mormon) blog representing a search for knowledge, understanding, and wisdom.

Sunday, April 02, 2006

General Conference Saturday Afternoon Notes

President Monson conducting.

Reports & sustaining votes.

Elder Boyd K. Packer—Talks of Alma and his son Corianton. Neglected his mission and allowed Satan to lead him into immorality. Cannot hide one’s crimes from God. Drove away investigators because they saw Corianton’s bad conduct. The preaching of the word of God is more powerful than anything else, including the sword. The coming of Christ spoken of. Alma teaches Corianton some gospel truths about resurrection. The justice of God and the punishment of the sinner explained. Justice and mercy each have their role. Mercy depends on an Atonement. The unwavering stand of eternal law. Alma knew personally about punishment and repentance. He felt the agony of guilt. His mind caught hold of the thought of Jesus Christ and he pleaded for mercy. He was redeemed. Joy and light. Alma then worked unceasingly to save others. Mercy cannot rob Justice. Alma rebuked Corianton then showed him love. Joseph Smith taught that we may have to reprove, but should afterwards show an increase of love. Corianton’s grandfather, Alma, had served as a priest in King Noah’s court. He was converted by Abinadi’s words. Corianton repented. Sent to preach more. He stayed faithful. It is a wicked world we live in today. No way to escape influence. Many are tempted. Satan harvests his crop and binds them down. He is the deceiver. He convinces some they are born into a life of sin and that they can’t repent and be forgiven. But the Atonement means that they can repent and be forgiven. Gospel of Jesus Christ is the gospel of repentance and forgiveness. Those who may stumble and fall are not cast off forever. The Lord cannot look upon sin with the least degree of allowance, but the soul that repents is forgiven and the Lord remembers their sins no more.

Elder David Bednar—Baptism is first ordinance of the gospel. It must be followed by baptism by fire (the gift of the Holy Ghost) to be complete. Blessings flow from the companionship of the Holy Ghost. God determines conditions of all gospel covenants. We can use our agency and accept these conditions. Fundamental convenants of baptism: take upon us Christ’s name and always remember him and keep his commandments. Then we will always have his spirit to be with us. We are then confirmed to “receive” the Holy Ghost. This is a directive to strive for the baptism of the spirit. Joseph Smith taught that both baptisms are necessary. Then cometh a remission of your sins. As we learn about the Holy Ghost, we learn that the promptings aren’t always alike or always easily recognized. The Holy Ghost is a still small voice. Its promptings are delicate and subtle. We should seek diligently to recognize and act on promptings. We should also endeavor to discern when we withdraw ourselves from the Spirit of the Lord. We should attend to and learn from the choices that separate us from the Holy Ghost. We should then stop those choices. Entertainment is one example of something that might drive away the spirit. Taking the Holy Spirit for our guide is possible and it is essential for our salvation. The covenant promises that we may always have the spirit to be with us. Book of Mormon is the primary source to turn to for help in this. Read about the Liahona—it is a type and a shadow for our day and tells what we should do to enjoy the gift of the Holy Ghost. What caused the Liahona to work and to not work? If we study this, we will receive inspiration tailored to our needs in this matter. What made it work is what makes the Holy Ghost able to work in our lives (faithful, diligent, heed). What made it not work (slothfulness, unfaithful, forgetfulness) will cause us to draw ourselves away from the Holy Ghost. We each have a spiritual compass—the Holy Ghost. As we press forward in life, we receive direction from the Holy Ghost just as Lehi received direction from the Liahona and will show us all things that we should do. Let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly…. The Holy Ghost can teach us to understand the Lord and His ways. It can be our guide and can bless us with inspiration, direction, protection. Obedience, faithfulness, diligence, service, humble. Avoid evil that causes us to withdraw ourselves. Also worthily partaking of the sacrament brings the Holy Ghost to us as we renew our baptismal convenants. Then we become worthy vessels in whom the spirit of the Lord can dwell. Joseph Smith emphasized staying close to the spirit—obtain and keep the spirit of the Lord. .

Elder Evans—Joy in doing the work of the Lord. Missionaries often have difficult circumstances, but can still be happy as they serve the Lord. The Lord loves faithful missionaries. It was necessary to raise the bar of standards for missionaries so they will have the protection of the Lord in this day and age. Discouragement is replaced by commitment. Forget yourself and get lost in this great cause (sharing the gospel). This will make you happy. Serve and live faithfully.

Elder Paul—Our road would be chaotic if everyone did just what they want to do. Media promotes this. Our Heavenly Father has given us a better way. The great plan of happiness makes us truly free and happy. We are free to choose liberty and eternal life, or captivity and misery. We brought our agency with us from our heavenly home. Agency is an eternal law. Brigham Young said it has always existed and always will. Jesus Christ defended agency against Lucifer (Satan). “We will prove them herewith to see if they will do all things which the Lord their God shall command them.” In order to use our agency, we must have knowledge of good and evil. We must have agency to choose between them. There must be consequences of our choices. Christ set the perfect example for all of us on how to use our agency. We should make our choices by the same criteria—the will of our Heavenly Father. It may not always be convenient, but if we make the right choice, the Lord will take care of us. We may not see it, but He will. Things will turn into a blessing if we do the Lord’s will. Agency is a great gift.

Elder Russell M.Nelson—This is a day of disintegrating morals. Marriage between a man and a woman is ordained of God. The family is all important. One of Satan’s cunning methods is to attack marriage and the family. Marriages would be happier if nurtured more carefully. In the Lord’s own way and time, no blessings will be withheld. Step one: comprehend the doctrinal foundation of marriage. One man and one woman. So the earth might answer the ends of its creation. Other definitions of marriage are contrary to the plans of God. Marriage is the foundry for social order. Marriage is an eternal covenant. Should be treasured and honored. (Refers much to the Proclamation on the Family.) Families are eternal. Marriage is a commandment. True happiness is predicated upon personal purity. Marriage should lift husbands and wives to exaltation in celestial glory. Agency and accountability are other doctrines related to marriage. Foremost priesthood duty is to nurture your marriage. Step Two: Specific methods. Appreciate, communicate, and contemplate. Grateful partners should look for the good in each other. Good communication means planning together, talking and listening together, help each other as equal partners, elevate and motivate each other, goals are mutually understand, prayer. If couples contemplate often with each other in the temple, they will remember sacred covenants. They will be in tune with each other and the Lord. Begin with a sincere desire to nurture the marriage. Be selfless and grateful. Set goals. Vision expanded and understanding enhanced. Quotes the song “Because.”

Elder L. Tom Perry—Anticipated the day of receiving the Aaronic Priesthood. D & C 13. What it means to bear the holy priesthood. Using God’s power worthily. Passing sacrament. Not all approach taking the sacrament in the same way. For some it is a matter of routine. For others, they approach it with reverence. The sacrament is a reminder of our covenants and our promises. Started with Adam making sacrifices to God, even before he understood why. This continued until Christ’s atoning sacrifice. The night before, Jesus established the ordinance of the sacrament at the Last Supper. Requires that we follow Him and obey His will. Matthew 26. 3 Nephi 18. A testimony to the Father that we shall always remember Jesus and keep His commandments. Promise: we will have His spirit to be with us. Renews baptismal covenants. The gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ is a covenant between us and our Heavenly Father. One of the most sacred ordinances in the church. Meditate on the atoning sacrifice of the Savior. Must not become casual or we will lose the opportunity for spiritual growth. Spiritual wounds are healed. Must partake worthily. Must live by every word that cometh forth from the mouth of God. Renewal and commitment. Prepare. Attend sacrament meeting with reverence and with gratitude. Keep oneself more fully unspotted from the world. Realize the blessing of being able to take the sacrament.



Blogger Guy Murray said...

"Fundamental covenants of baptism: take upon us Christ’s name and always remember him and keep his commandments. Then we will always have his spirit to be with us."

From Elder Bednar's talk . . .this concept/principle was one that particularly resonated with me in this conference, as it is one I have been contemplating for some time now, long before this conference convened.

9:38 PM  

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