Monday, December 15, 2014

Unit 2: Choice 1: Jude: "Keep Yourselves in the Love of God"

1. Read Jude 1:1-3 How can you multiply mercy, peace, and love? How can you appropriately "contend for the faith"?
You can multiply mercy, peace, and love through obedience to God's commandments and acceptance of the Lord's atonement. If we are disciples of Christ, standing true in all things, this is an appropriate contending for the faith and will also multiply mercy, peace, and love.

2. Read Jude 1:4-19
~ The doctrine referred to in the wording "first estate" of Jude 1:6, is that of our fore-ordination. We all are "pre-destined" for different things. We know this, because we know that we lived with Heavenly Father before coming to earth. We are well on our journey as we are here on the earth. We have plans and things that we need to accomplish on this earth for ourselves and for the Salvation of others.
~Jude 1:9 Michael and Satan dispute. This is an interesting situation and verse in which we feel that they are disputing over the burial of Moses. The words of Michael are most likely from verses of "scripture" or books that were well known in that day and therefore, are odd for us, as we do not really know of these writings. Translation could be incorrect as well. We believe the 8th Article of Faith. We believe our scriptures to be correct as far as they are translated correctly.
~Jude 1:14 Who will Accompany Christ at the Second Coming? 10 Thousand of his Saints. This really makes you imagine all those who are righteous and past on, they will be angels rejoicing, and around, presenting the Lord to the world.

3. How can we avoid the evils that come from false teachers?  Jude 1:17, 20-25
       One of the most important things we can do to avoid the evils of false teachings is to stay close to the true doctrines that we have. Reading, studying and becoming familiar with Christ's teachings will be a protection to us as we try to fight off false teachings. If we know the truth well, we will be stronger to defend ourselves. The true way to avoid the evils of this world is the simple things that are stressed to us so often. We must pray, repent, serve others, speak of Christ, and rejoice in Christ.

Unit 1: Choice 2: 2 Peter 2. Teaching

2 Peter 2:1-19
1. Characteristics of False teachers described by Peter:
~Damnable heresies: such as denying the Lord. (deny true teachings)
~Unlawful deed doers
~speak evil of things they do not understand
~speak words of vanity
How does this list help you recognize false teachers today?
All of these things the Savior speak against. They are all sinful and don't seem like things that a follower of Christ would be partakers of. All of these things give me a bad feeling, so if I am losing the Spirit through a "teacher" than it is most likely a false teacher. There is one thing that all items on the list have in common: they are selfish. righteous, true teachers are more selfless, as they pattern their lives and teachings after the Savior, Jesus Christ.

2.   2 Peter 2:20-22 and Doctrine and Covenants 82: 3,7
The dangers of returning to "The Pollutions of the World":
If we know the truth and then turn from it, we are more responsible and are more accountable for our sins than those that sin 'unknowingly'. It goes along with most knowledge we receive throughout our lives. When we are very young children and we do something wrong, our parents correct us, teach us why it is wrong, etc. Then when we do it again, there may be harsher punishment, because this time we were aware of the wrong.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Unit 2 Choice 4: The Trial of Our Faith is More Precious than Gold

1 Peter 1:1-9, 2:12,  2:15, 2:20-25, 3:11-16, 4:12-19
"Life isn't Fair. Why do I have to have so many trials? I'm tired of being ridiculed by those who do not keep the commandments."
What is your reply using the Principles from the above verses?
           "Have you thought of the beautiful atonement of Jesus Christ and that he lives? Christ went through the valley of the shadow of death and for us to return to our Heavenly Father. He wants us to reach that, to partake of the many wonders and blessings that await us if we just endure our trials. I know that it is difficult when you are fighting a hard, uphill battle and others are constantly flaunting their ways of the world. 
           Those of us that keep the commandments seem to have more trials and harder trials. I think that is probably true. Our Father wants us to be strong. I heard a quote recently that said "If I gave you anything easier, you could do it on your own." We are being taught to rely on the Lord. Isn't it awesome that we are supposed to use the support of Christ? I love that. I think we need to look to our Savior in all of our trials. He was a master teacher in so many ways. He taught through his great example that we need not fight back with our words or in anyway. We need to smile, because everyone is fighting a hard battle.
           One thing that helps me when I am going through a hard time is to do as President Hinckley's father told him on his mission, "Forget yourself and go to work". It is when we are lost in the work of the Lord that we truly find ourselves and the answers and peace that we seek. In 1 Peter chapter 3, verse 15 it tells us that we should always be prepared to share with someone if they ask us the reason for our Hope, these people who mock your righteous doing and when you speak of Christ. So to those that ridicule you for keeping the commandments and pressing on, do not shy away. Build an answer as you study and pray that will help you testify of Christ. It could be something like, ' I have a Savior who loves me and through his guidance I am choosing higher ground in all places that I walk.' That alone testifies of Christ and of truth, but leaves them to ponder."

Unit 1 Choice 1: Hebrews 8-10 The Atonement is Greater than All of the Sacrifices of the Old Testament

1. Hebrews 8:1-3,  9:22-28, 10:1-4,  10:10-17, Alma 34:10,  Alma 34:13-14
How did the Atonement of Jesus Christ fulfill the Law of Moses?
~What was the purpose of the Law of Moses?
~What does the Atonement of Jesus Christ do for us?
Christ wanted to make a sacrifice to end all sacrifice. There needed to be a sacrifice that would take away the sins of the world so that God's children could return to live with him again. This could not be done by the blood sacrifice of sheep or bulls. Christ's sacrifice is eternal and covers the sins of all men. The purpose of the law of Moses was to await the great, last, eternal Sacrifice of the Savior. 

2.   Hebrews 9:11-18, Institute Manual Hebrews 9:1-10, 9:11-15, 23-28,  How are the Labors of the High Priests in the temple like unto what the Savior did for us in the Garden of Gethsemane? The high priests did a ceremonial act with two goats. Killing one and letting the other go free. "This ceremony signified the sending away of the sins of the people”. They did this in act of "taking all of the people's sins". The acts of the high priests were foreshadowing's of the Atonement of Christ. The atonement came after these high priest offerings and thus, Christ was our "High Priest" and not only our High Priest, but he was also the offering. He went willingly into Sacrifice. 

3. Why is the title "High Priest of good things to come" an appropriate title for the Savior? 
His was the ultimate sacrifice. Once Christ atoned for our sins, standing as our High Priest, taking upon him all of the pain of the world, if we take that upon us and give our sins to him (he has already paid for them), then we can have complete joy. Through Christ there is only light and joy through  obedience and repentance so that we may return to our Father in Heaven. Just like in this Christmas season we say, "He who brings Good tidings of Great joy". Our Savior is the bearer of all things good and joyful. There is light in Christ and through Him, all mankind may be saved.  

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Unit 2, Choice 6: Hebrews 3-4 Entering into the Lord's Rest

Hebrews 3:8-4:16,  Institute manual commentary Hebrews 3:11 "What does it mean to enter into the "rest" of the Lord?" (pg. 383)

What group of people were refused entrance into the Lord's rest?
Those who did not believe in Christ. 
What sins caused them to forefeit this privilege?
They did not believe, they denied Christ. 
How does Doctrine and Covenants 84: 23-24 help define what is the Lord's rest?
It seems through this scripture that the Lord's rest is more of an inner peace, being in the Presence of God. If we cannot face him, then we cannot enter into his rest. If we are not worthy and prepared for his presence, we cannot obtain that rest. 
What sins did Paul repeatedly warn against so as not to incur the same punishment?
He warned against unbelief and sin, against having a hard heart to the things of the Lord. He warns of procrastination. We need to act in faith and repent now. 
How do you think the warnings in Hebrews 3:12-15 apply to us?
We need to remember that our Father in Heaven and Christ know the intents of our Hearts and we cannot hide anything from them. It also talks about how Christ also had temptations and could have sinned, but did not. We need to follow Christ. 
List the counsel found in Hebrews 4 that will help a person enter into the rest of the Lord.
We need to have faith (action) with our knowledge of the gospel. 
Honor the Sabbath day and rest from your labors, as did Christ. 
Work hard. 

How do Matthew 7: 21-23, John 7:17, James 1:22 help in understanding how the word needs to be "mixed with faith"? (Hebrews 4:2-3).  We need to act in faith, act through the Lord. It is more than going through the motions, but having a deeper understanding and connection to the Savior. If we know the will of the Lord, then we are aligning our will with his. Act through Christ, do what he wants you to do. If we only listen and lean unto our own understanding of what the Lord wants, then we are not being instruments in his hands. 

Unit 1 Choice 1: Philippians 1-4 Find Solutions in the scriptures to Life's Challenges

1. People sometimes argue and complain over petty matters in church meetings or throughout the week. (See Philippians 2:1-8; 14-15)
These verses teach us that if we have charity and act in charity then we will be able to better communicate with those around us. We need to be less concerned with ourselves and learn to love and serve those around us. When we want to complain, we should hold back those words and we will get through the "storm" and all will be better off for the way we conduct ourselves through hard times or disagreements. 

2. Many youth feel that their parents' testimony is sufficient for them. Since they have good parents, they rely on them for all of their spiritual strength. (See Philippians 2:12-15 and Institute manual commentary Philippians 2:12 "Work out Your Own Salvation with Fear and Trembling"[pp. 361-62].  We need to be sturdy on our own, through our Faith in Christ. We cannot be a light to those around us if we do not contain the light. Having not our own testimony, we will not be able to help and guide anyone unto Christ. I really like how in the institute manual Elder Oaks reminds us that it is not enough for us to simply obey the commandments, but we need to teach truth to others. 

3. An investigator is considering joining the Church, but his family will no longer associate with him if he does. (See Philippians 3:7-16; 4:13)
 If we will sacrifice all, we will know Christ. How much stronger will our testimonies be if we can do that, as we will have a more full understanding of Christ and his atoning sacrifice. "I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me" Sharing these scriptures with someone who is going through something like this would probably be very helpful to them as they contemplate how they will continue on the path of righteousness. 

4. How is this assignment an example of the principles taught in 2 Nephi 32:3?  When we have a question, there is always an answer in the scriptures. Heavenly Father does speak to us and has given us keys of understanding through the scriptures and modern day prophets as well. If we seek, we shall find.