13 O all ye that are spared because ye were more righteous than they, will ye not now return unto me, and repent of your sins, and be converted, that I may heal you?
At the time of Jesus Christ’s death in Jerusalem, there were numerous natural disasters on the American continent. After the destruction was over, the people who were still alive heard a voice listing the cities that had been destroyed: Zarahemla, Moroni, Moronihah, Gilgal, Onihah, Mocum, and many others. The voice repeatedly told the survivors that those cities had been destroyed because of their “wickedness and abominations.” The people might reasonably have concluded that they had been spared because of their righteousness. This was correct, but as the voice clarified in the passage above, the division wasn’t between the wicked and the righteous but rather between the less righteous and the more righteous. I find it striking that the invitation the Savior gives to the more righteous is the same invitation He would have given to the less righteous: repent.
We all need repentance. No wonder it is the second principle of the gospel. We are not fundamentally perfect people who only repent when we mess up and do something out of character. We are mortal children of Heavenly Parents who repent as part of a divinely appointed process of becoming like them. Therefore great division in the world isn’t between those who need to repent and those who don’t. It’s between those who choose to repent and those who don’t.
Today, I will remember the Savior’s invitation and promise. I will choose to repent and be converted, so that His atoning power can heal me.