They Hearkened Not

Before Noah boarded the ark, he warned his neighbors:

Believe and repent of your sins and be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ, the Son of God, even as our fathers, and ye shall receive the Holy Ghost, that ye may have all things made manifest; and if ye do not this, the floods will come in upon you.

Moses 8:24

Unfortunately, the people “hearkened not” (Moses 8:21, 24). I’m not sure what was most important to them at that time, but I’m quite sure that as the water level rose, those priorities receded rapidly.

In the Book of Mormon, several prophets warned the people of coming calamities. One of those was Abinadi, who prophesied that the people of King Noah would be conquered by their enemies unless they repented. (See Mosiah 11:20-25.) Some time later, Noah’s son Limhi lamented that they had not only rejected Abinadi but had executed him. “Therefore,” he said, “who wondereth that they are in bondage, and that they are smitten with sore afflictions?” (Mosiah 7:26-28).

As I’ve thought about Abinadi and Noah today, I’ve remembered several recent invitations we’ve received from President Russell M. Nelson:

  • “In coming days, it will not be possible to survive spiritually without the guiding, directing, comforting, and constant influence of the Holy Ghost…. I plead with you to increase your spiritual capacity to receive revelation” (“Revelation for the Church, Revelation for Our Lives,” General Conference, April 2018, emphasis added).
  • “The Lord is gathering those who are willing to let God prevail in their lives. The Lord is gathering those who will choose to let God be the most important influence in their lives. For centuries, prophets have foretold this gathering, and it is happening right now! As an essential prelude to the Second Coming of the Lord, it is the most important work in the world!” (“Let God Prevail,” General Conference, October 2020, emphasis added).
  • “If you and I are to withstand the forthcoming perils and pressures, it is imperative that we each have a firm spiritual foundation built upon the rock of our Redeemer, Jesus Christ…. The safest place to be spiritually is living inside your temple covenants!” (“The Temple and Your Spiritual Foundation,” General Conference, October 2021, emphasis added).

Today, I will hearken to the invitations we have received from a living prophet. I will continue to increase my ability to receive and understand revelation from God. I will contribute to the work of gathering Israel. And I will renew my commitment to keep my temple covenants.

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