A Perfect Effort

Blog #68, September 11, 2023

Proverbs 4:1-2
4:1 Hear, ye children, the instruction of a father, and attend to know understanding.
4:2 For I give you good doctrine, forsake ye not my law.

To be God's children we must first allow Him to be our Father. Understand that our fellowship together is not one be one of responsibility or duty. It is meant to be a choice. God chooses to love each one of His children as His very own. His hearts desire is that each of us chooses to love Him and accept Him as our Father. Open your heart and allow yourself to be humbled by the true intent of the Lord God of Heaven.

1 Nephi 5:126-131 
5:126 Behold, the Lord hath created the earth that it should be inhabited;
5:127 And he hath created his children, that they should possess it.
5:128 And he raiseth up a righteous nation; and destroyeth the nations of the wicked.
5:129 And he leadeth away the righteous into precious lands, and the wicked he destroyeth, and curseth the land unto them for their sakes.
5:130 He ruleth high in the heavens, for it is his throne, and this earth is his footstool.
5:131 And he loveth those who will have him to be their God.

The very center of our fellowship with God is love and love is founded on trust. The trust God has in us is so complete that it begs the question, "Do we also trust Him, and if not, why". I will say that again, God trusts us. He offers us the most precious authorities in all of creation trusting that they will be used for the purpose intended. Do we trust Him, and if trust is the proper gauge for love how much does He love us? Decide for yourself.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his Only Begotten Son, that whosoever believeth on him should not perish; but have everlasting life.

How much love would it take for us to send our child out to suffer for the sinners of the world? In God we believe that death has no power, but the suffering Christ endured was real. He was a man like all men and when the spikes that held Him to the cross pierced His body, He felt pain. When His faithful disciples betrayed Him, denied Him, and left Him to face dishonor and abuse alone, He felt the pain of a broken heart. My own heart brakes when I envision Him dejected and abandoned hanging from a cross, filled with our sin, waiting for death to claim Him. Then the light of truth fills my soul when I remember that Christ willingly endured that pain for me. He faced it that I might have the opportunity to be cleansed of my sins, redeemed, and returned to God my loving Father. When I let it be that personal, it dawns on me that this sacrifice had to be done for love. No other reason could have inspired Christ to do what He did for me, for you, for us. For me, that is a true measure of God's love.

John 3:17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.

The trust God has in us is witnessed in John 3:17. Christ was not sent to condemn those who did not know God. He was sent to redeem them. This was the will of the Father. Christ's life, His ministry, and His sacrifice at Calvary are a complete testimony of His willing obedience, His love for the Father, and His love for us. This testimony of Christ is a type and shadow of all we seek to be, in the name of the Father, and He trusts us to do it.  

1 John 4:16-19
4:16 And we have known and believed the love that God hath to us. God is love; and he that dwelleth in love dwelleth in God, and God in him.
4:17 Herein is our love made perfect, that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as he is, so are we in this world.
4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear; because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.
4:19 We love him, because he first loved us.

God's love for us is witnessed in the ministry and sacrifice of Christ, and testified of by the Holy Spirit. In this love He seeks that we grow. In fact, the true mission of this Holy Trinity is our growth. We are given the chance to grow from accepting the Gospel message as truth, to involving ourselves diligently with those laboring for God's purpose.

Hebrews 6:1-3
6:1 Therefore not leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God.
6:2 Of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, and of the resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
6:3 And we will go on unto perfection if God permit.

Understand the meaning of this passage from Hebrews, and you will understand the fullness of all God seeks for us. In a spiritual belief beyond the fear of God, we are free to be bold and explore wisdom beyond salvation. Our covenant with God begins with our repentance from the works of life that would have eventually brought us an everlasting death. The needs of justice are fulfilled when we accept the sacrifice of Christ as sufficient for the sins in our lives. By trusting God’s word, we testify of our belief in His love. This belief, leads us to the act of repentance known as baptism. In this act and by our belief, we allow God’s mercy to be unleashed in our lives to nurture and sustain us as we grow to become God's covenant children. Like Israel we have a relationship that is more than just a belief. It is everything we need to become one with the Father and join Him in His labor to redeem humanity. 

2 Nephi 6:41-42 
6:41 O the greatness and the justice of our God! For he executeth all his words, and they have gone forth out of his mouth, and his law must be fulfilled.
6:42 But, behold, the righteous, the saints of the Holy One of Israel, they who have believed in the Holy One of Israel; they who have endured the crosses of the world, and despised the shame of it; they shall inherit the kingdom of God, which was prepared for them from the foundation of the world: and their joy shall be full for ever.

As creatures of choice humanity deserves to have all the information God has available for them. If we seek to please the Father it is essential that we share with the world the fullness we received. Without the fullness of our testimony the world will fall short of all that God seeks for them, for God has some lofty ideals for His children that we need to attain together.

Matthew 5:50 Ye are therefore commanded to be perfect, even as your Father who is in heaven is perfect.

We have discussed perfection on the personal level, but God wants a gathering of people in the perfect unity of oneness to be His Church laboring with Him for the redemption of everyone, everywhere. Again that involves the ability to offer God a perfect effort. What is that perfect effort when it involves a gathering of people? What does it look like? How will we know when we have achieved it?

Mark 4:7 And other seed fell on good ground, and did yield fruit, that sprang up and increased, and brought forth, some thirty-fold, and some sixty and some an hundred.

This is a part of Christ's parable of the sower and I am convinced Christ is trying to school us on the nature of the gathering of people who will be His Church. He wants then to be a people who upon receiving God's grace immediately put it to work. He opened the minds of His disciples to this very ideal.  

Mark 4:17 And these are they who receive the word on good ground; such as hear the word, and receive it, and bring forth fruit; some thirty-fold, some sixty and some an hundred. 

The rich full ground that will nurture the Gospel of the Kingdom is made up of a people that realize they have been given the very best God has to offer. God's offering will cause us to grow, change, and grasp important understandings. It is intended for all of humanity. If we were to hide it from the rest of humanity, it would become an unbearable burden. If we were to give them a Gospel changed in any way from the simple truth it is, we would become unforgiveable hypocrites and our effort would fail. It has to be shared, and it has to be shared in its fullness untainted by the ways of man. 

Matthew 5:16-18
5:16 Verily, verily, I say unto you, I give unto you to be the light of the world; a city that is set on a hill cannot be hid.
5:17 Behold, do men light a candle and put it under a bushel? Nay, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light to all that are in the house.
5:18 Therefore, let your light so shine before this world, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.

Many groups of people have attempted to create a community that held the ways of God as their immutable standard. Many have tried but sadly, many have failed. I am convinced that that all of these failures can be attributed to one fatal mistake. They forgot the words "together and truth". They allowed men to rob God of His rightful place as leader. By this act they created division and destroyed oneness. Truth became lies and together became "us verses them".

Psalms 85:10-11
85:10 Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed each other.
8511 Truth shall spring out of the earth; and righteousness shall look down from heaven.

Diligence to the unity of oneness is absolutely essential if you are to be of one heart, one mind, of one God, with one purpose. What caused this failure is no great mystery, because humanity has this overpowering need think too much, remember to little, and resent anyone who professes to have a better way; especially God. In their haste to become king of their new little Utopia, they forgot that God gave us a source knowledge that is also a direct link to the omnipotent, all-seeing creator of the universe.

John 14:26 But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

Genesis 6:64 Therefore it is given to abide in you, the record of heaven, the Comforter, the peaceable things of immortal glory, the truth of all things, that which quickeneth all things which maketh alive all things, that which knoweth all things, and hath all power according to wisdom, mercy, truth, justice and judgment.

Consider this: Each of us receives the same Holy Spirit at baptism. If we all receive the same source of knowledge, explain to me why there are so many different interpretations of scripture and why in the world we need traditions and rituals?

Romans 15:5-6
15:5 Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according as was Christ Jesus;
15:6 That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.

Yes I understand that the Bible was written in 3 different languages and have since suffered some 724 different translations. I realize this can cause a certain amount of confusion. But, seemingly, God gave us the Holy Spirit to overcome the difficulties that occur in translation. Apparently those translating or those that ruled the translation either misheard or refused to recognize the Holy Spirit as the accepted authority He is. Otherwise meanings would have been consistent. One has to assume that an entity as viable and capable as described in Genesis 6:64 would possess the wherewithal to eliminate any inconsistencies. But, I guess you have to be paying attention. 

John 7
7:22 Moses therefore gave unto you circumcision; (not because it is of Moses, but of the fathers;) and ye on the Sabbath day circumcise a man.
7:23 If a man on the Sabbath day receive circumcision, that the law of Moses should not be broken; are ye angry at me, because I have made a man every whit whole on the Sabbath day?
7:24 Judge not according to your traditions, but judge righteous judgment.

And yes, I understand that rituals and traditions insure a continuity of worship from one generation to the next, but even Christ questioned that. What of growth? What of letting our worship reflect the ability of God and the ways of God to be pertinent yesterday, today, and forever? I mean, are we really ready tell God that His Holy Spirit and the growth it brings us is truthfully, a threat to all we are trying to accomplish.

DC 18:2n-2o
18:2n Learn of me, and listen to my words; walk in the meekness of my Spirit and you shall have peace in me.
18:2o I am Jesus Christ; I came by the will of the Father, and I do his will.

Brethren, God wants to gather us together to share the truth of righteousness with all mankind, but we have to allow Him to do it, or it will never happen. Together we must gather all His knowledge and let it grow in our hearts. Together we must open our hearts to Him and allow His knowledge to become our desire. Together we must learn how to apply His way to the many different cultures. Together we must open our hearts to common understandings that agree with Him. That requires a diligent labor that we perform together under His tutelage through His Holy Spirit. Oneness is a labor we can only accomplish together with us trusting him and each other. No one is greater and no one is less. We must be in this together.

Alma 14:96 Yea, and we have been instruments in his hands, of doing this great and marvelous work; therefore let us glory, yea, we will glory in the Lord; yea, we will rejoice, for our joy is full; yea, we will praise our God for ever.

The Kingdom of God is not magic that will just appear. It is a process that requires a perfect effort exercised by all involved and passed along to others in a fullness of understanding. Were that perfect effort a mathematical equation, it might look something like: 
God's truth + God's Holy Spirit + (Christ's Sacrifice - Humanities prideful nature) + (Trust x Love) = The Perfect Effort we seek.  

Let joy fill your day.
Reach out to another that you might live that joy together.
Offer the world an effort that will testify of God's desire to lead us back to Him.




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