We met a man from Florida in the South Visitors' Center the other day. He had moved to Utah a couple of years ago solely based on the fact that his wife had been told by God in the Temple to do so. I asked him, "Have you found out yet why God told you to do that?" and he said,
"No. I don't need to know why. The only important thing is that we answered the call." Me and my companion were both a little confused. But didn't he want to know? Did he not even have the slightest curiosity? Didn't he have the right to know, especially after he had followed God's will?
The next day as I was doing my personal studies in the Book of Mormon, I read this golden nugget: "Wherefore, the Lord hath commanded me to make these plates for a wise purpose in him, which purpose I know not." God commanded Nephi to make two sets of records. That's not an easy or simple task in 600 B.C. It's not like you can copy and paste. But Nephi was totally okay with doing this whole other record even though it seemed redundant. He had no idea what God's plan was, but he did it simply because God commanded him to. Which is pretty cool of him. Good for you Florida man, for remembering Nephi's good example.
Then I kept reading where Lehi, Nephi's father sees a vision about the tree of life, and Nephi asks God if he can see the vision also. And then this scripture happens: "he that diligently seeketh shall find, and the mysteries of God shall be unfolded unto them, by the power of the Holy Ghost, as well in these times as in times of old, and as well in times of old as in times to come; wherefore, the course of the Lord is one eternal round." And then God says "okay" and Nephi gets to see the vision too.
What the what? This messed with my brain; Nephi just said that he was chill with not knowing the mysteries of God. Why is he going ahead and asking God for favors again? And then the Spirit gives him a play by play of what Lehi's vision was.
After some time of "whaddaheck" and "????" I figured out what was up (God told me what was up), and why God divulged at Nephi's request. Here is a passage from a talk "The Very Root of Christian" (a BYU speech (go cougars)) That kind of explains what I understand from all of this:
"We should not use appeals to pride or even to a rational c
alculation of what is in one’s best interest: heaven or hell. The best way—the only way—to persuade people to repent and come unto Christ is to get them—to get us—to think about what He has done for us and especially about what He has suffered for us. That is how Christ does it."
If Nephi asked God why he needed to make another set of records, it would have been for his own best interest and pride. When Nephi asked God to show him Lehi's dream, it was not for his own best interest. It was because he had a true desire to understand God and Jesus Christ. And anybody who asks to understand the mysteries of God shall find it. It's made me think, when I ask God about things, what is my motive? I truly truly believe that as soon as we put away our pride and best interest, God answers. And when we learn about the Atonement of Christ and it's magnitude, we will naturally want to turn away from ourselves and turn to God.
Have a good week everyone.
And Happy Leap Year. Here is a leaping picture:
And a stupid picture: