Save it were the most believing

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The Most Believing

A while back, while I was reading the Book of Mormon, I came across a passage in the last chapter of Helaman 16:14-15 & 23 which really caught my attention.  It reads:

14 And angels did appear unto men, wise men, and did declare unto them glad tidings of great joy; thus in this year the scriptures began to be fulfilled.

15 Nevertheless, the people began to harden their hearts, all save it were the most believing part of them, both of the Nephites and also of the Lamanites, and began to depend upon their own strength and upon their own wisdom, saying:

23 And notwithstanding the signs and the wonders which were wrought among the people of the Lord, and the many miracles which they did, Satan did get great hold upon the hearts of the people upon all the face of the land.

more believing - Alma Testifying to Korihor That There Is a God

Alma Testifying to Korihor That There Is a God

Notice the phrase “most believing” in verse 15.  Throughout the Book of Mormon it talks about Anti-Christs, the king-men, the Gadianton Robbers, etc… These men are preceded by a state of pride, and usually result in wars between the peoples of the Nephites and Lamenites.  Still, throughout all these conflicts, one thing is consistent, the righteous prevail as a result of the promise of the Lord,

…for the promise of the Lord was, if they should keep his commandments they should prosper in the land.

Compare the above passages found in Helaman to these found in Alma 1:24&25

24 For the hearts of many were hardened, and their names were blotted out, that they were remembered no more among the people of God. And also many withdrew themselves from among them.

25 Now this was a great trial to those that did stand fast in the faith; nevertheless, they were steadfast and immovable in keeping the commandments of God, and they bore with patience the persecution which was heaped upon them.

In both sets of verses, you have a condition where the hearts of men were hardening against God.  In the second, after much fasting the people in general became steadfast in the faith (see also Alma 49:30 and Alma 30:2-3).  But something changed in Helaman.  At a time when the signs of Christ’s first coming were prevalent with angles appearing unto men, or when it should have been easier to stay faithful, with so many witnesses all around them, all but the most believing part of them were able to stay steadfast in the faith.  Why the difference, what changed?  The main difference was the timing, up until this point in the Book of Mormon, the righteous were looking forward to a distant time when Christ would appear.  Now they have signs indicating that the time of Christ was at hand.  In fact it would be a mere 11 more chapters into the 3rd book of Nephi that the Lord would appear until this people in the America’s, saying, in verse 10:

10 Behold, I am Jesus Christ, whom the prophets testified shall come into the world.

Modern-day Revelation

Now I’m not going into why this difference was so significant, but if you recall, the Book of Mormon was compiled for our time by the Prophet Mormon inspired and lead by the Holy Ghost.  So there was a reason Mormon provided us with this narrative.  To help us understand, I would like to compare the words of Helaman to those spoken in General Conference in October 2015.  Specifically Elder Kim B. Clark’s of the Quorum of Seventy “Eyes to See and Ears to Hear“.  Here are a few selected passages from that talk.

In His mortal ministry, Jesus worked such mighty miracles of healing and taught with such authority and power that the scripture says, “His fame went throughout all Syria … and there followed him great multitudes of people.” Some who saw Him heal and heard Him teach rejected Him. Others followed Him for a season but then walked with Him no more

These gifts and blessings strengthened the Lord’s disciples. Although the times they lived in were dangerous and confusing, they received the spiritual gift of eyes to see and ears to hear. By the power of the Holy Ghost, they began to see the truth of things as they really are, especially of the Lord Jesus Christ and His work among them

…there were many men and women, including His faithful Apostles, who centered their lives on Him. Though they struggled with worldly distractions, with confusion about what He taught, and even with fear, they believed in Him, loved Him, and followed Him.

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2015/10/eyes-to-see-and-ears-to-hear?lang=eng&cid=email-shared#watch=video

We see that even during the time of Christ on the Earth, many would hear but not be strong enough and would fade away.  Elder Clark continues:

Our time is a dangerous time—a time of great evil and temptation, a time of confusion and commotion. In these perilous times, the Lord’s prophet on the earth,

more believing - President Thomas S. Monson

President Thomas S. Monson

President Thomas S. Monson, has called us to rescue the wounded in spirit, to stand for truth with courage, and to build the kingdom of God. Whatever level of spirituality or faith or obedience we now have, it will not be sufficient for the work that lies ahead. We need greater spiritual light and power. We need eyes to see more clearly the Savior working in our lives and ears to hear His voice more deeply in our hearts.

In the mouth of two or tree witnesses

Do you see the parallels to Helaman?  We must find ourselves among the most believing, if we are to stay steadfast in the faith during these dangerous times.  As found in Matthew 18:16:

in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.

For more on the topic of dangerous times, see my posts concerning the moral decline of America.

First we have the witness of Helaman.  Second, we have the experiences and witness of the 12 Apostles which ultimately resulted in the great apostasy.  Finally, in our time, you have the words of the Prophet quoted by an Elder of the Seventy clearly warning us that we need to step it up a notch or two if we desire to be among the “most believing part“.   Recall the Lords warning to us in the last day, found in Luke 21:25-26:

25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;

26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.

Worldly Distractions

Looking back at the words of Elder Clark, he said, even of the most believing:

…there were many men and women, including His faithful Apostles, who centered their lives on Him. Though they struggled with worldly distractions, with confusion about what He taught, and even with fear, they believed in Him, loved Him, and followed Him.

more believing - Christ ordains his Apostles

Christ Ordaining the Apostles (Christ Ordaining the Twelve Apostles), by Harry Anderson (62557); GAK 211; GAB 38; Primary manual 2-66; Primary manual 7-11; Matthew 10:1–4; John 15:16; Ephesians 2:19–20; Articles of Faith 1:5–6

Even the Apostles struggled with worldly distractions and confusion over what Jesus taught.  So what are some of the bigger concerns, distractions, of today, that would prevent us from being numbered among the most believing?  Consider Lehi’s dream in which  Lehi sees many coming forth, taking hold of the rod of iron, and proceeding down the strait and narrow path towards the tree of life.  As Lehi looks around he see’s a mist of darkness:

And it came to pass that there arose a mist of darkness; yea, even an exceedingly great mist of darkness, insomuch that they who had commenced in the path did lose their way, that they wandered off and were lost.

False Doctrine

In an Adult Institute class I took a few years back, the instructor clarified the mist of darkness.  I had already a simple understanding, in which I compared it to temptation, which isn’t wrong, but a more specific answer, as he shared with us, is that it represents false doctrine.  If you compare it to the rod of iron found in the next verse:

And it came to pass that I beheld others pressing forward, and they came forth and caught hold of the end of the rod of iron; and they did press forward through the mist of darkness, clinging to the rod of iron, even until they did come forth and partake of the fruit of the tree.

It’s clear that the rod of iron and the mist of darkness are in opposition to each other.  The mist is there to get you to let go of the rod and lead you away.  If the rod of iron represents the word of God or in other words true doctrine, the mist must represent false doctrine, that which would lead you down alternate paths.

What are some of the false doctrines that effect us today?  I will not provide a complete list, I will leave that for the reader, but to help get you started, I would offer the following suggestions for your consideration:

Conclusion we must be More Believing

As someone who feels the call to share what I’ve learned, a watchman on the tower as it where, I hope that you take what I’ve said and study the topic for yourself.  I firmly believe that we are well into the trying times foretold by the ancient prophet.  A time that all dispensations before us looked forward to with anticipation.  A time when we will see miracles performed almost daily if we have eye’s to see.  A time that will be both more difficult than any other dispensation, but equally more rewarding.  A time when some of the most elect spirits have been saved for, among them I count all of my children.  A time when it will no longer suffice to be a casual follower of our Lord Jesus Christ, but a time rapidly approaching were we must find ourselves numbered among the “Most Believing“.

Midnight Rider

Served a mission in Ukraine for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. In collage, served in the Guard as a Russian Linguist; deployed in ’03 to Iraq. Founded a Tea Party, have been a PCP and vice-chairman of a local republican party. Active in the BSA, Freedom First Society & home-schooling. Husband & father.

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