Sunday, August 22, 2010

41a - The Book of Mormon Is Another Testament of Jesus Christ! Part VI: Abinadi and Isaiah Testified of Jesus Christ!

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Abinadi Testifies of Jesus Christ -by Arnold Friberg
 I now give you the opportunity of reading the entire chapter 16 of the Book of Mosiah, from which came TODAY'S THEME. This chapter provides us with the very strong testimony of the Nephite prophet, Abinadi, regarding his sure knowledge, by the Spirit of Prophecy and Revelation, of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ.
Mosiah 16: 1 AND now, it came to pass that after Abinadi had spoken these words he stretched forth his hand and said: The time shall come when all shall see the salvation of the Lord; when every nation, kindred, tongue, and people shall see eye to eye and shall confess before God that his judgments are just.
2 And then shall the wicked be cast out, and they shall have cause to howl, and weep, and wail, and gnash their teeth; and this because they would not hearken unto the voice of the Lord; therefore the Lord redeemeth them not.
3 For they are carnal and devilish, and the devil has power over them; yea, even that old serpent that did beguile our first parents, which was the cause of their fall; which was the cause of all mankind becoming carnal, sensual, devilish, knowing evil from good, subjecting themselves to the devil.
4 Thus all mankind were lost; and behold, they would have been endlessly lost were it not that God redeemed his people from their lost and fallen state.
5 But remember that he that persists in his own carnal nature, and goes on in the ways of sin and rebellion against God, remaineth in his fallen state and the devil hath all power over him. Therefore, he is as though there was no redemption made, being an enemy to God; and also is the devil an enemy to God.
6 And now if Christ had not come into the world, speaking of things to come as though they had already come, there could have been no redemption.
7 And if Christ had not risen from the dead, or have broken the bands of death that the grave should have no victory, and that death should have no sting, there could have been no resurrection.
8 But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ.
9 He is the light and the life of the world; yea, a light that is endless, that can never be darkened; yea, and also a life which is endless, that there can be no more death. 
Knowing, by that same spirit, that his life would be taken, Abinadi courageously and devotedly taught that which he knew to be the most important truths that can be taught.

Now I invite you to read and listen to a second chapter in which are recorded the brave and faithful prophet, Abinadi's words addressed to King Noah and his court.

The prophet, Abinadi is perhaps my favorite prophet from the Book of Mormon. We know know nothing of his personal history. However, we know without any doubt, that his testimony of Jesus Christ was exceedingly strong. We know also that he did what the Lord asked him to do. He made it clear as recorded in other chapters of the Book of Mosiah, that he knew his life would be taken from him, nonetheless, he knew that the Lord wanted him to preach the Gospel to King Noah and his court.

Among the wicked priests of King Noah in his court pictured above, there was a young misguided priest, by the name of Alma, who had served King Noah and been a part of the wickedness that went on the court of the king. Alma's heart was touched deeply by the words of Abinadi.

This Alma, through much tribulation and sacrifice, became the leader of Jesus Christ's Church, in Ancient Central America, and remained such during the remainder of his life. Much additional good came of Abinadi's mission to preach to King Noah and his court. I don't have the space to list all of that here.

I'm going to speculate. First, however, some background: In recent posts you have had the opportunity to read the speech King Benjamin gave from the wall of the temple. Most, if not all of his people were there to hear that speech. They had come at the King's request to this event where he announced that he would be turning his kingship over to his son, Mosiah when the time came for him to leave this life. He told his people that time was near at hand.

Now my speculation I referred to above is this, that about twenty four years prior to the time that Abinadi preached to King Noah and his court, he, Abinadi could well have been among King Benjamin's people who, it was reported in King Benjamin's record, spoke in one unified voice:

Mosiah 5: 2 And they all cried with one voice, saying: Yea, we believe all the words which thou hast spoken unto us; and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, which has wrought a mighty change in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually.
3 And we, ourselves, also, through the infinite goodness of God, and the manifestations of his Spirit, have great views of that which is to come; and were it expedient, we could prophesy of all things.
4 And it is the faith which we have had on the things which our king has spoken unto us that has brought us to this great knowledge, whereby we do rejoice with such exceedingly great joy.
5 And we are willing to enter into a covenant with our God to do his will, and to be obedient to his commandments in all things that he shall command us, all the remainder of our days, that we may not bring upon ourselves a never-ending torment, as has been spoken by the angel, that we may not drink out of the cup of the wrath of God. (emphasis added)
Isn't that remarkable! If Abinadi had been among those of King Benjamin's people who joined in entering into that covenant expressed in Mosiah 5:5 above, he kept that covenant completely! His following the Lord's commandments would have actually brought him to the last of his days doing the will of the Lord.

Abinadi, We love and honor you! I'm sure many of my readers are joining me in this expression of love and honor! I (We) look forward to the privilege of meeting you at the feet of our Savior and Redeemer, Jesus Christ sometime after we have left this mortal existence. Thank you! Thank you for your great commitment!

I must add a word of gratitude to the great and talented LDS artist, Arnold Friberg, for enabling my, and possibly your (the readers of this post), tribute to the prophet, Abinadi, through his painting of Abinadi as he testified before the wicked king and his court.

Brother Friberg died very recently and his great art work received much praise in the local newspapers (Salt Lake City, Utah (U.S.A.). His artistry allows us to feel that we were right there! Thank you!

I'm pleased to have added the name of the Prophet Abinadi to the list of Book of Mormon prophets who have testified of the Lord Jesus Christ which I have been accumulating in this series of blog posts entitled: The Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ.

Before ending this post I will give you the special opportunity of reading the words of the Prophet, Abinadi as he quoted the words of the great prophet, Isaiah who lived long before Abinadi's ancestor, Father Lehi, left Jerusalem with his family and some relatives and was led by the Lord to what we know now as Central America.

Isaiah's witness of the Messiah, Jesus Christ, who was to come was truly great! Abinadi knew that and he wanted the King and his court (among whom he, Abinadi most likely knew was a young priest (by the name of Alma) who would be converted to the Lord.)

Perhaps you can put yourselves in the place of young Alma who had been living wickedly along with the King and the other priests to the king. Please prayerfully read these great and inspired words of Isaiah as the great and inspired Nephite prophet, Abinadi recites them. Try to feel that which young Alma, who was in the process of being converted to the Lord, deeply felt as he heard this great witness.

I have inserted a painting of Isaiah to give you a greater feeling about this impactful testimony of Isaiah and Abinadi:
The Prophet Isaiah Foretells The Birth and Life Mission of Jesus Christ -by Harry Anderson

Mosiah Chapter 14
Isaiah speaks Messianically—Messiah's humiliation and sufferings are set forth—He makes his soul an offering for sin and makes intercession for transgressors—Compare Isaiah 53. About 148 B.C.
YEA, even doth not Isaiah say: Who hath believed our report, and to whom is the arm of the Lord revealed?
2 For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of dry ground; he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him there is no beauty that we should desire him.
3 He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
4 Surely he has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows; yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.
5 But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities; the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.
6 All we, like sheep, have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquities of us all.
7 He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth; he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb so he opened not his mouth.
8 He was taken from prison and from judgment; and who shall declare his generation? For he was cut off out of the land of the living; for the transgressions of my people was he stricken.
9 And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no evil, neither was any deceit in his mouth.
10 Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief; when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand.
11 He shall see the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied; by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore will I divide him a portion with the great, and he shall divide the spoil with the strong; because he hath poured out his soul unto death; and he was numbered with the transgressors; and he bore the sins of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.
There will be more such posts in this series, and I'll try very hard to not overlook any prophets whose testimonies of Christ were recorded in that sacred book! (The Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ)


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