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D&C 76 – Review
Does the 76th Section of the D&C speak to you differently today than it did when you were a youth? How?
- “Exaltation is our goal, but discipleship is our journey”
- “If we look at ourselves through our mortal eyes, we may not see ourselves as good enough. But our Heavenly Father sees us as who we truly are and who we can become.”
What does the challenge from a modern day prophet President Russell M. Nelson, a grandfather’s letters to his grandchildren and a Deseret News article “Sacred Idleness” have to do with the 76th Section of the D&C?
First, let’s look at the history of the 76th Section.
- Occurred at the Johnson farm in Hiram, Ohio on Feb. 16th, 1832
- Joseph and Sidney received the revelation together with about 12 others present.
- There was a Calvinist thought at the time that God saved and damned according to his own good pleasure with little regard for human effort.
- Philo Dibble was an eyewitness:
- Joseph would, at intervals say, “what do I see?”…. Then he would relate what he had seen…Then Sidney replied “I see the same”.
- This manner of conversation was repeated at short intervals to the end of the vision…
- I would sum up the 76th Section: God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ live! It is the will of God to bestow immortality and eternal lives upon as many of His children as will receive and practice the degree of truth worth of a celestial level of glory.
- D&C 76:10
- D&C 76:20
- D&C 76:22-24
The challenge from a modern day prophet President Russell M. Nelson. See the “Prophets, Leadership, and Divine Law” Worldwide Devotional, Jan. 8, 2017. http://www.deseretnews.com/article/865670712/President-Russell-M-Nelson-Prophets-leadership-and-divine-law.html
- His identity, His Atonement, and His attributes will become personal and real to you.
- See the Topical Guide “Jesus Christ” page 240
- Bible Dictionary “Christ” page 633
- A grandfather’s letters to his children – “That Ye May Believe” by Elder Neal A. Maxwell
- Mormon 3:20-21
An example of Elder Maxwell’s letters: “Our perfect Father does not expect us to be perfect children. He had only one such Child. Meanwhile, therefore, sometimes with smudges on our cheeks, dirt on our hands and shoes untied, stammeringly, but smilingly we present God with a dandelion – as if it were an orchid or a rose. If for now the dandelions the best we have to offer, He receives it, knowing what we may later place on the altar. It is good to remember how young we are spiritually.“
Sacred Idleness is a Balm for Weariness,” Deseret News, Boyd Matheson Dec. 27, 2016.
- D&C 76:19: “While we meditated upon these things, the Lord touched the eyes of our understandings…”“Sacred Idleness is a Balm for Weariness,” Deseret News, Boyd Matheson Dec. 27, 2016
- “Sacred idleness is about pursuing small moments that matter. It is making time for yourself and those you care about to do things that are important, rejuvenating and set aside for your purposes. Activities that give you energy back are sacred.”
M. Russell Ballard
“The 76th Section of the D&C may have been one of Joseph Smith’s most powerful and significant spiritual experiences. Joseph and Sidney literally conversed with the Lord for about an hour and a half as the Savior showed the what Joseph later described as ‘eternity sketch’d in a vision from God, of what was, now is and yet is to be’”
Joseph Smith referred to a son of perdition, “He must receive the Holy Ghost, have the heavens opened unto him and know God and then sin against Him…. He has got to say that the sun does not shine while he sees it, he has got to deny Jesus Christ when the heavens have been opened unto him and to deny the plan of salvation with his eyes open to the truth of it.”
Pres. Russell M. Nelson “Each of you will be judged according to your individual work and the desires of your hearts.”
Elder Neal A. Maxwell “God thus takes into merciful account not only our desires and our performance, but also the degrees of difficulty which our varied circumstances impose upon us No wonder we will not complain at the final judgement, especially since even the telestial kingdom’s glory surpasses all understanding.”
“…compare those inhabitants on the earth who have heard the gospel in our day, with the millions who have never heard it, or had the keys of salvation presented to them, and you will conclude at once as I do, that there is an almighty work to perform in the spirit world.”
Quote by Brigham Young in the book “The Vision” by NB Lundwall.
Children are being taught the plan of salvation and they sometimes wonder if Heavenly Father has provided a way for them or those they love to overcome spiritual death and return to God’s presence. See “Living By the Spirit” by Joy Rigby in June Ensign 1984.
President Utchdorf “The life-giving waters of the everlasting gospel are before us. Will we take just a few sips through a pinched straw? Or will we allow these waters to spring up inside of us, filling us with renewed energy and divine power?”
The more we know about the character of Jesus Christ, the more we have faith in His Grace and that is sufficient to see us through our personal trials and troubles and we find peace in the Lord’s plan of salvation.
He wants to reveal to us light and truth… but He can only do it as we are prepared to receive it. Then He will confirm in our hearts the truth of what we are learning….
“That which is of God is light, and he that receiveth light, and continueth in God, recevith more light; and that light growth brighter and brighter until the perfect day.” D&C 50:24)