A Solemn Assembly

Today is the Jewish holiday Shemini Atzeret, which falls the day after the seven-day festival of Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles. The word shemini (שמיני) means eighth, and atzeret (עצרת) is a "solemn assembly." The Lord commanded ancient Israel twice to observe this day: "Seven days ye shall offer an offering made by fire unto... Continue Reading →

Grace for Grace

Near the beginning of the Gospel of John, there is an unusual statement which describes how we receive the power of God: And of his fulness have all we received, and grace for grace.John 1:16 The Greek word rendered "for" in that passage—anti (ἀντί)—actually means "in place of" or "in exchange for." What does it... Continue Reading →

Maintenance

In 1832, the Lord clarified some principles of caring for the poor and the needy. One of those principles was that parents have the primary responsibility to provide for the needs of their children. "All children have claim upon their parents for their maintenance until they are of age" (Doctrine and Covenants 83:4). Maintenance refers to financial support, but more broadly... Continue Reading →

Oblations

In ancient Israel, an essential element of worship was giving gifts to God. Worshippers would bring animals or grain to the temple—the very best they had—to offer as a sacrifice. The King James Version of the Bible most frequently refers to these gifts as "offerings," but it sometimes calls them "oblations." An oblation is a... Continue Reading →

The Two Great Commandments

After delivering the children of Israel from slavery in Egypt, the Lord gave them many commandments through the prophet Moses. Here are two of them: "Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might" (Deuteronomy 6:5)."Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself" (Leviticus 19:18). A couple of observations about these two commandments: The... Continue Reading →

Love One Another and Serve One Another

During the last week of His life, the Savior reaffirmed the importance of service to others. Listing a number of basic needs—food and water, shelter, clothing, medical care, and emotional support—He instructed us to provide these resources to people in need, saying, "Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these... Continue Reading →

A House of Prayer

Through the prophet Isaiah, God made the following promise to all those who reverence sacred things: "Them I will bring unto my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer" (Isaiah 56:7). Years later, the prophet Jeremiah stood at the doorway to the temple and denounced the wickedness of the people, who... Continue Reading →

“That Ye May Not Shrink” – 2 Nephi 9:46

Sometimes, in order to be successful in life, we must face difficult challenges head-on. Avoiding those challenges simply won't work, and half-hearted participation will not produce satisfactory outcomes. The prophet Jacob used the word "shrink" to describe the natural instinct to recoil from painful experiences. "It grieveth my soul and causeth me to shrink with... Continue Reading →

“Temporal and Spiritual” – Mosiah 2:41

Don't underestimate the value of temporary things. On at least two occasions, Nephi's brothers, Laman and Lemuel, asked him whether the principles of the gospel related to temporal things or only to spiritual things. They seem to have wanted to keep different parts of their lives separates, with their daily decisions being disconnected with their... Continue Reading →

“Fellow-Servants” (Alma 17:29)

What inspires you to serve? For me, it is often seeing other people serve. Several years ago, I met a young couple in Chennai, India. They were running a school for young children who lived in a leprosy colony. After talking with them for a short time, I was struck by how happy they were.... Continue Reading →

Create a website or blog at WordPress.com

Up ↑