There are many references in the scriptures, both ancient and modern, that attest to the influence of righteous music. The Lord, Himself, was prepared for His greatest test through its influence, for the scripture records: “And when they had sung an hymn, they went out into the mount of Olives.”
-Boyd K. Packer, Inspiring Music – Worthy Thoughts, 1973
Many have asked the question, “If the Bible is the Word of God, why do we need more scripture? Wasn’t it given to answer life’s questions?”
First, I would like to agree that the Bible truly is the Word of God and was given to provide answers to many questions of the soul. It was written and compiled under direct inspiration from God through his Spirit. However, I wish to address why it is not enough, and I know the answer can easily be found within the Book of Mormon. In 1 Nephi 13, Nephi (one of the first Book of Mormon prophets) sees in vision the coming forth of the Bible. It reads:
“And it came to pass that I, Nephi, beheld […] a book, and it was carried forth among them. And the angel said unto me: Knowest thou the meaning of the book? And I said unto him: I know not. And he said: Behold it proceedeth out of the mouth of a Jew. And I, Nephi, beheld it; and he said unto me: The book that thou beholdest is a record of the Jews, which contains the covenants of the Lord, which he hath made unto the house of Israel; and it also containeth many of the prophecies of the holy prophets; and it is a record like unto the engravings which are upon the plates of brass, save there are not so many; nevertheless, they contain the covenants of the Lord, which he hath made unto the house of Israel; wherefore, they are of great worth unto the Gentiles.” (1 Nephi 13:20-23)
Here we see that an angel of the Lord is testifying to one of God’s prophets of the importance of the Bible (the “record of the Jews”). It contains the covenants of the Lord and is very important for all of us to have. I wish to second that with my witness of the truthfulness of the Bible – I know it contains what we need. However, various philosophical debates and creeds brought about many changes within the pages of the bible, thereby causing it to lose many of it’s “plain and precious truths” (see 1 Nephi 13:26-27. 29)
How could such a problem be fixed?! By the hand, gift, and power of God, He has spoken again in our day and has provided for us those truths that were once lost for a long time. Within the pages of the Book of Mormon, the Doctrine & Covenants, the Pearl of Great Price, and the words of modern apostles and prophets, the plain and precious truths once lost have been restored!
“And the angel spake unto [Nephi], saying: These last records, which thou hast seen among the Gentiles, shall establish the truth of the first, which are of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, and shall make known the plain and precious things which have been taken away from them; and shall make known to all kindreds, tongues, and people, that the Lamb of God is the Son of the Eternal Father, and the Savior of the world; and that all men must come unto him, or they cannot be saved.
“And they must come according to the words which shall be established by the mouth of the Lamb; and the words of the Lamb shall be made known in the records of thy seed, as well as in the records of the twelve apostles of the Lamb; wherefore they both shall be established in one; for there is one God and one Shepherd over all the earth.” (1 Nephi 13:40-41)
“The priesthood of God is power. It’s an endowment, which the Lord has given to us who hold the priesthood, to perform sacred ordinances that have effect in this world and in the world to come. It’s the greatest power in the world—the priesthood—and I am very happy that I have had the privilege through the years to bear the priesthood and to receive offices in the priesthood from deacon up to the offices of the Melchizedek Priesthood which I have had assignments to work in. I know that it’s the priesthood that will save this world. It is not a man-made organization; it is not a man-prepared organization—it embodies a power revealed from heaven and sent here to us to help us prepare our lives for eternal life in the presence of our Father in Heaven.”
I heard a story recently at church that I found very interesting. Although I don’t know who wrote the story or all of the details of the story, I wish to paraphrase what I got out of it, in hopes that those who read this blog will get as much out of it as I did. It goes as follows:
A man was walking down the street and came across some broken glass from a mirror. The glass was the leftover debris of a vehicle accident that had occured a few days prior. The man stopped for a moment and decided to pick up one of the shards of glass on the street. He took the shard home, rounded off and smoothed its edges, and turned it into his own little personal mirror. After carrying around this mirror for a few days, he found it to be an incredible cure for boredom. Whenever he found a moment, he pulled out his mirror and began reflecting the light from a room or from outdoors into corners of a room that could otherwise recieve no light. This game turned into something more for this man, for he learned a very valuable lesson.
This man came to understand that we must serve the same purpose his little mirror served – we must reflect the light given from Christ to the places – or people – that otherwise could not recieve such blessings. This reflection is made manifest through our obedience to the commandments and to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. As we do all we can to emulate the Savior, countless lives will be blessed!
The scriptures teach us a wonderful truth regarding who Christ is:
“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.” (Mosiah 16:9)
May we always remember our part in bringing all of Heavenly Father’s children home again. May we reflect the HIs light to everyone around us!
As many of you are aware, I absolutely LOVE music! As we get deeper into the Christmas season, I felt it appropriate to share some christmas music that invites the Christmas spirit. What accompanies these renditions of classic christmas songs is a powerful testimony of the Savior, Jesus Christ. I invite you to pay particular attention to how you feel while listening to these various songs…
“Charity is, perhaps, in many ways a misunderstood word. We often equate charity with visiting the sick, taking in casseroles to those in need, or sharing our excess with those who are less fortunate. But really, true charity is much, much more. Real charity is not something you give away; it is something that you acquire and make a part of yourself. And when the virtue of charity becomes implanted in your heart, you are never the same again.”
(Marvin J. Ashton, “The Tongue Can Be a Sharp Sword,” Ensign, May 1992, 18)
“There is a serious need for the charity that gives attention to those who are unnoticed, hope to those who are discouraged, aid to those who are afflicted. True charity is love in action. The need for charity is everywhere. Needed is the charity which refuses to find satisfaction in hearing or in repeating the reports of misfortunes that come to others, unless by so doing, the unfortunate one may be benefited. The American educator and politician Horace Mann once said, ‘To pity distress is but human; to relieve it is godlike.'”
(Thomas S. Monson, “Charity Never Faileth,” Ensign, Nov 2010, 122–25)