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Throughout the history of this world, whenever God, our Eternal Heavenly Father, has found that that any particular group of descendants of Adam and Eve, our original parents here on earth, have dropped to totally unacceptable depths of depravity and wickedness, he has wrought total destruction among them!
In the days of Noah it appears that the Lord God determined that "the particular group whose behavior had dropped to totally unacceptable depths of depravity and wickedness included all of mankind except Noah and his family." Noah had warned as many as he could but they did not heed his warnings.
Therefore, at a certain point of time during Noah's long life, the Lord God brought about an exceedingly great, totally comprehensive flood, which destroyed all living creatures, including all of mankind, except for Noah and his family and those animals which they were able to bring along with them in their exceedingly huge ark.
|The Lord Fulfilleth All His Words -by Clark Kelly Price|
Throughout the nearly fourteen million member Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, this year, 2010, in many nations, world wide, using many different languages and dialects, the course of study in our Sunday Schools is that of the Old Testament.
In my just previous post I noted that there is a rotating schedule followed in LDS Church Sunday School curriculum: After one year of Old Testament Study, the New Testament will be studied for one year. In the following year the Book of Mormon is studied and in the fourth year, Church History and the Book of Doctrine and Covenants of the Church are studied. Then that rotation is repeated!
This curriculum rotation has been followed by this church for most all of my adult years. I expect it to continue throughout the rest of my life. It is blessing me with a thorough Gospel education which I highly value!
Those scriptures which are studied contain the words of God through His prophets here on earth. They are key means in leading church members to improve their manner of living and can gradually help lead them to Eternal Salvation.
Recently, after having studied earlier events in this world's history, including the Great Flood of Noah's time, as recorded in the Old Testament, we also studied in our Sunday School classes the account given in that great book of scripture, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah which took place during the Prophet Abraham's time on earth. It is told about in Genesis 19 and is referred to in the New Testament in a number of places. One is in:
2 Peter 2: 6 And turning the cities of Sodom and Gomorrah into ashes condemned them with an overthrow, making them an ensample unto those that after should live ungodly;
7 And delivered just Lot, vexed with the filthy conversation of the wicked:In searching the Internet I found a painting in which is depicted the departure of Lot and his family from Sodom and Gomorrah thus escaping the destruction that took place there which some historians have estimated as having occurred in about 1323 B.C.:
|Fleeing Sodom and Gomorrah -by John Martin|
In our current Old Testament Sunday School Guide, the following is written about Lot and his relationship to the city of Sodom. We are then asked an intriguing question.Perhaps many of you readers would feel more comfortable making a statement similar to what I will now make before ever trying to answer that very good question highlighted in blue just above: "Elements of Sodom have actually grown up right around me without my fully realizing it!"
At first Lot "lived in the cities of the plain," outside Sodom, but he pitched his tent toward Sodom" (Genesis 13:12). Later he lived in the city of Sodom itself. What things might we do that are the spiritual equivalent of pitching our tents toward Sodom? (emphasis added)
It is hard for me to even vizualize just pitching my tent toward Sodom. Sodom is right here, right now and is all around us although we can't see it. We can blame this reality on the pervasive presence of the Internet! This truth can be proven by just reading an article I recently found in a local daily newspaper.
Recently I bought an issue of the daily newspaper available in the Greater Salt Lake City Area of Utah (U.S.A.), other than the one we subscribe to. I quickly found this:
"Peg McEntee (of the Salt Lake Tribune Newspaper) spent a month interviewing and riding along with investigators in Utah's Internet Crimes Against Children Task Force as they tracked down and confronted suspected producers and consumers of child pornography. She reports on the problem, and law enforcement officers' efforts to stop it, in her columns through Sunday.
Here are some examples of what I saw last month: On one run, case agent Dave Artis and three other officers served a search warrant at a Main Street apartment. At first, it doesn't go well. The occupant wouldn't open the door, so Artis kicks it in. Another agent videotapes the whole operation, and I watch as soon as they come back to their offices. Inside, they find filth. Thirty or more empty cans of cat food on the kitchen floor and fast-food bags everywhere. Mold around the toilet. A bare bed; at its foot a computer monitor and three hard-drives full of child pornography. A singular bit of evidence, often found in such homes, are the many bottles full of urine the men use so they don't have to take their eyes off the screen. "I wish you could put the smell" on the tape, one agent says. "These guys get so addicted to child porn that every waking moment is spent with it," says McQuiston, then commander of the ICAC unit. "The house goes to garbage. Nothing else matters." (emphasis added)
The chalkboard above displays a heartfelt message from a young girl interviewed at the Childrens' Justice Center in the Salt Lake City area, Utah, (U.S.A.) regarding her devasting experience with child sexual abuse.
Parents tell us that their children feel much better after their visit to the program." (This photo and paragraph of explanation was obtained from the Utah Attorney General's section of the Internet.)I'm not able personally to say or even guess which disasters that are occurring here on earth right now are brought about by the will of God in order to punish the people who are affected.
When people are suffering from the effects of such destruction as in the case of the recent 7.0 earthquake in Haiti, about which I have been reporting in recent posts, giving details on relief brought to the people there by other people from many different places, including members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Utah (U.S.A.); our business is not to judge why the destruction occurred, but instead, it is to do all within our power and means to assist those who are suffering!
In Chapter 9 of 3Nephi (Book of Mormon) are recorded the words of our Resurrected Lord and Savior Jesus Christ to the more righteous Nephites who were saved from destruction during which huge numbers of deaths occurred within their nation (including the deaths of relatives of many of them). Many cities were totally wiped out!
After your having listened to and read that scriptural link, no further explanation is needed about what the Resurrected Lord Jesus Christ actually told the Nephites as to why a huge number of their nation were destroyed; while the rest of them, the more righteous, were saved and then visited by Him who initiated that destruction!
That which was described in that scriptural link is a perfect example of the THEME of this particular post: Our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ are one in all things! Only when we choose to put ourselves in their hands and do what they have commanded us to do, can we be perfectly sure and confident that our lives will have been worth living when our time to leave this life comes. We can also be assured that we will be the recipients of a glorious resurrection which will allow us to live with our righteous loved ones and with our God eternally! (See Doctrine and Covenants 76)
The Presence of Mankind Upon the Earth Was Not Brought About By Evolution, It was Brought About By Our Heavenly Father for His Eternal Purposes!As we finish this post, I want you to be reassured in a very positive way of the potential happiness life can bring. I can help you with this because each of us, you and I, are blessed with the great blessing of having access to the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ along with the other marvelous and sacred scriptures, the Old and New Testaments and also with additional Latter-day scriptures revealed by his prophets in our day and age of the world's history, along with the words of inspired living modern day prophets!
Christ and the Book of Mormon Children and Angels from Heaven -by Del Parson
After effective preparation by the Lord Jesus Christ and the effective follow-up leadership on the part of the twelve apostles whom He had ordained and assigned to lead his people, each of nine of his Nephite apostles served faithfully and well, and when they each reached the age of seventy two, as Jesus had promised, their spirits passed on to the other side of the "veil." They were each replaced with another righteous man to take their place as they continued to develop a near perfect society where there was much happiness and peace.
The Resurrected Jesus Speaks With Three Nephite Apostles
This perfect society lasted for about two hundred years. But then the Nephites began to live less and less as the Savior had taught them to live and more and more as Satan tempted them to live.
However, the Lord had promised that through the Book of Mormon which would be brought forth in our day, their descendants, the Lamanites in the Americas, would once again be taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ and many of them would come back into His fold.
Just an afterthought: I note that the young girl who wrote that note on the blackboard (shown above) has been helped so sensitively by "human angels" in the form of kindly and caring investigators of the Childrens' Justice Center in the Salt Lake City, Utah area, that she must have experienced to some degree, the kind of feelings felt by the Nephite children shown with our Resurrected Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and angels from heaven in one of the paintings above!
At least, she who wrote the message on the blackboard shown above, expressed sincere appreciation for her interviewers having listened patiently to her in her time of great affliction!
Now dear readers of this blog post, I will just briefly mention that the righteousness of the Nephite-Lamanite nation described in the scripture just above, during their about two hundred years of righteous living, is something we would all do well to emulate in our lives. In so doing we will avoid destruction that can come because of unrighteousness and we will be blessed with eternal life with Jesus Christ and with our loved ones living now and those who have passed on before!
The Lord, Jesus Christ, through his ancient American prophet Moroni, gives a stern warning to those of us who have lived previously or live now in what was Moroni's and his people's promised land which we know as the Americas.
In view of what we have reviewed in this post about the major known examples of destruction that has come upon the peoples of this earth beginning with Noah's time and on down throughout history, we should each take great care to follow Moroni's firm and sure pleading:
Ether 2: 8 And he (the pre-mortal Jesus Christ) had sworn in his wrath unto the brother of Jared, that whoso should possess this land of promise, from that time henceforth and forever, should serve him, the true and only God, or they should be swept off when the fulness of his wrath should come upon them.
9 And now, we can behold the decrees of God concerning this land, that it is a land of promise; and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall serve God, or they shall be swept off when the fulness of his wrath shall come upon them. And the fulness of his wrath cometh upon them when they are ripened in iniquity.
10 For behold, this is a land which is choice above all other lands; wherefore he that doth possess it shall serve God or shall be swept off; for it is the everlasting decree of God. And it is not until the fulness of iniquity among the children of the land, that they are swept off.
11 And this cometh unto you, O ye Gentiles (us), that ye may know the decrees of God—that ye may repent, and not continue in your iniquities until the fulness come, that ye may not bring down the fulness of the wrath of God upon you as the inhabitants of the land have hitherto done.
12 Behold, this is a choice land, and whatsoever nation shall possess it shall be free from bondage, and from captivity, and from all other nations under heaven, if they will but serve the God of the land, who is Jesus Christ, who hath been manifested by the things which we have written. (emphasis and clarification added)
I must also mention that it is necessary to be baptized into the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which is Heavenly Father's and Jesus' only authorized church, in order to be blessed to live with both of them along with our beloved family members, both those now living and those who are now among the dead, in what is termed: Eternal Life. Then of course, after baptism into their church, we must live righteously in dedicated service to Them and our fellow-man for the rest of our lives!
Then when the Great Day of the Second Coming of our Lord and Savior comes upon us, (and it could come during some of our lifetimes) we can be caught up into the air to be greeted by Him and His resurrected Saints who lived before.
While those who are resurrected at the second coming of our Lord and Redeemer, Jesus Christ, according to the prophet Malachi, 4:1-3 and the resurrected Jesus Christ, (3 Nephi 25:1-3), after the burning of the earth which will take place just before the Savior and the Hosts of Heaven descend, they will actually have been trodding on the ashes of the unrighteous! A brief note: The Nephites were given the words of Malachi by the Resurrected Jesus Christ. That is why we have access to these same words in two separate scriptural accounts (in the Old Testament and in the Book of Mormon. The Nephite's scriptures, the Brass Plates of Laban, did not contain the writings of Malachi because Malachi's time on earth came after Lehi and his group left Jerusalem on their way to their promised land in ancient Meso-America.
3Nephi 25:1 FOR behold, the day cometh that shall burn as an oven; and all the proud, yea, and all that do wickedly, shall be stubble; and the day that cometh shall burn them up, saith the Lord of Hosts, that it shall leave them neither root nor branch.
2 But unto you that fear my name, shall the Son of Righteousness arise with healing in his wings; and ye shall go forth and grow up as calves in the stall.
3 And ye shall tread down the wicked; for they shall be ashes under the soles of your feet in the day that I shall do this, saith the Lord of Hosts. (emphasis added)In all the centuries before and on the day of the Lord's Second Coming, the unrighteous dead will not have been resurrected. However, through the Lord's great atonement and his love for all mankind, all will be resurrected in their own due time. After they have been allowed to suffer for their own sins, (in cases where that is possible), they too will be resurrected, but not to the highest degree of glory, but to a lesser degree of glory. (Doctrine and Covenants: 76)
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This help is widely available throughout the U.S.A. and also in a number of other countries throughout the world including in Finland where I served two missions, the latest of which was with my dear wife, Melva.
Upon clicking on the link below you can discover if such help is available within manageable reach of your home. You are invited to come at the indicated time at the given address, without having made previous arrangements to attend!
Just show up! You will be warmly welcomed!
This service is available to both members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and to those of other faiths. No religious proselyting is done whatsoever in these group meetings nor afterwards!
Note: After you have have accessed LDS Family Services choose Addiction Recovery Program, choose: Addiction recovery support groups After you are in that section, look for the area where you live and click on that. That will tell you the location and time for group meetings.
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