Friday, December 4, 2015
Walking after the Holy Order of God
In the book of Alma, Chapter 7, verse 22 Alma speaks to "awaken us to a sense of our duty before God that we might walk blameless before him, that we might walk after the holy order of God..." In verse 23 we find that the Holy Order of God is to be humble, be submissive and gentle; easy to be entreated; full of patience and long suffering; being temperate in all things; being diligent in keeping the commandments of God at all times; asking for whatsoever things you stand in need, both spiritual and temporal; always returning thanks unto God for whatsoever things ye do receive. Then in Verse 24 he adds: And see that ye have faith, hope, and charity, and then ye will always abound in good works.
In order to understand better what is required of us, I looked through other resources online and in the scriptures to find good definitions of each requirement. Here are some of the things that I learned:
Be Humble: I love how president Uchtdorf defines "humble" and the perfect example, the Savior, in this quote: “The greatest, most capable, most accomplished man who ever walked this earth was also the most humble. He performed some of His most impressive service in private moments, with only a few observers, whom He asked to ‘tell no man’ what He had done [see Luke8:56]. When someone called Him ‘good,’ He quickly deflected the compliment, insisting that only God is truly good [see Mark 10:17–18]. Clearly the praise of the world meant nothing to Him. … We would do well to follow the example of our Master.” If we can be humble like our Savior we will give glory to God and be blameless before Him.
Submissive - Submitting fully to the Lord and His purposes for us. If we can submit our will to His, we will be able to accomplish his purposes for us and be found blameless before Him.
Gentle - Mild in temperament or behavior; kind or tender. If we are gentle and do not react harshly or treating others unkindly, we will be found blameless before God.
Easy to be entreated - "I believe “easy to be entreated” is about how we hear the Lord’s word and how we follow the pleadings of the Holy Spirit. Alma’s hopes were that the people of Gideon would have minds and hearts open to the messages sent to them by a loving Heavenly Father, who is anxious to reveal truth, direction, comfort, solace, and assurance to His children. Alma wanted the people to qualify for, receive, and act on revelation." ~ Sandra Rogers, IVP, BYU. If we are easy to be entreated we will not be blamed for not hearing the word of the lord and following the promptings of the spirit.
Patient - President Dieter F. Uchtdorf, Second Counselor in the First Presidency, said, “Patience is not passive resignation, nor is it failing to act because of our fears. Patience means active waiting and enduring. It means staying with something … even when the desires of our hearts are delayed. Patience is not simply enduring; it is enduring well!” If we can learn patience and how to endure well until the end we will fall blameless before God.
Long suffering - The ability to endure in giving love, even when we may feel alone, hurt, or frustrated. If we learn to have love and patience for others and to not reacting to or return unkindness we might experience from others we will be blameless before God.
Temperate - Being temperate is to use moderation in all things or to exercise self-control. I love this quote from Kent D. Watson from his Ensign article "Being temperate in all things:" "Tempered glass, like tempered steel, undergoes a well-controlled heating process which increases strength. Thus, when tempered glass is under stress, it will not easily break into jagged shards that can injure. Likewise, a temperate soul—one who is humble and full of love—is also a person of increased spiritual strength.With increased spiritual strength, we are able to develop self-mastery and to live with moderation. We learn to control, or temper, our anger, vanity, and pride. With increased spiritual strength, we can protect ourselves from the dangerous excesses and destructive addictions of today’s world. If we can be temperate and exercising control and mastery over ourselves we will be blameless before God.
Diligent - having or showing care and conscientiousness in one's work or duties. If we put in our best effort continually to do the most important things, we will be blameless before God. I love this Ensign Article, "More diligent and concerned at Home" by David A. Bedar.
Grateful - "As disciples of Christ, we are commanded to “thank theLord [our] God in all things,”1 to “sing unto the Lord with thanksgiving,”2 and to “let [our] heart be full of thanks unto God.”3 Why does God command us to be grateful?All of His commandments are given to make blessings available to us. Commandments are opportunities to exercise our agency and to receive blessings. Our loving Heavenly Father knows that choosing to develop a spirit of gratitude will bring us true joy and great happiness...Could I suggest that we see gratitude as a disposition, away of life that stands independent of our current situation? In other words, I’m suggesting that instead of being thankful for things, we focus on being thankful in our circumstances—whatever they may be. ~ President Uchtdorf, Grateful in any circumstances. If we are grateful and thank the Lord for our blessings we will be blameless before Him.
Faithful - The Apostle Paul taught that “faith is the substance [assurance] of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen” (Hebrews 11:1). Alma made a similar statement: “If ye have faith ye hope for things which are not seen, which are true” (Alma 32:21). Faith is a principle of action and power. Whenever we work toward a worthy goal, we exercise faith. We show our hope for something that we cannot yet see. If we can have faith and be believing we will be blameless before God.
Hopeful - When we have hope, we trust God's promises. We have a quiet assurance that if we do “the works of righteousness,” we “shall receive [our] reward, even peace in this world, and eternal life in the world to come” (D&C 59:23). If we trust God and his promises and do works of righteousness we will be blameless before God.
Full of Charity - Charity is long suffering and is kind. One who is kind is sympathetic and gentle with others,”said President Ezra Taft Benson. “He is considerate of others’ feelings and courteous in his behavior. He has a helpful nature. Kindness pardons others’ weaknesses and faults [and] is extended to all—to the aged and the young, to animals, to those low of station as well as the high.” (In General Conference, October 1986.) If we are full of charity, or the pure love of Christ, we will be blamesless before Him. We can pray to understand others and have charity. Knowing how much I rely on the Savior myself helps me to have charity for others.
Abounding in good works - Having eyes to see and ears to hear the needs of others all around us and then going to work and acting upon these impressions to bring about much good on the Earth will make a difference in the lives of others. If we can learn to see the needs of others around us and keeping our covenants to serve one another, mourn with those that mourn and comfort those in need of comfort, we will be blameless before God.
Knowing that we will all fall short of perfection in walking in the Holy Order of God or in His ways, I am thankful for the mercy and the love of the Savior; For his atoning sacrifice for all of us that allow us to repent, change, and become better throughout our lives.
10 And behold, he shall be born of Mary, at Jerusalem which is the land of our forefathers, she being a virgin, a precious and chosen vessel, who shall be overshadowed and conceive by the power of the Holy Ghost, and bring forth a son, yea, even the Son of God.
11 And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.
12 And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.
13 Now the Spirit knoweth all things; nevertheless the Son of God suffereth according to the flesh that he might take upon him the sins of his people, that he might blot out their transgressions according to the power of his deliverance; and now behold, this is the testimony which is in me.
14 Now I say unto you that ye must repent, and be born again; for the Spirit saith if ye are not born again ye cannot inherit the kingdom of heaven; therefore come and be baptized unto repentance, that ye may be washed from your sins, that ye may have faith on the Lamb of God, who taketh away the sins of the world, who is mighty to save and to cleanse from all unrighteousness.
15 Yea, I say unto you come and fear not, and lay aside every sin, which easily doth beset you, which doth bind you down to destruction, yea, come and go forth, and show unto your God that ye are willing to repent of your sins and enter into a covenant with him to keep his commandments, and witness it unto him this day by going into the waters of baptism.
16 And whosoever doeth this, and keepeth the commandments of God from thenceforth, the same will remember that I say unto him, yea, he will remember that I have said unto him, he shall have eternal life, according to the testimony of the Holy Spirit, which testifieth in me.