Saturday, August 20, 2011
Lesson For 8/21/11 - The Oath And Covenant Of The Priesthood
The Lesson For 8/21/11 Was Originally To Be From The Gospel Principles Manual But Through Trial And Prayer, I have Found The Need To Make This A Focus For The Elders Quorum, Both For Review And For The Prospective Elders In The Quorum. Included In This Post Will Be Some Videos That Specifically Describe The Details That Come From The 84th Section Of The Doctrine And Covenants.
Before I Proceed With My Insight, Understanding, And Counsel, Let Us Hear From An Apostle Of The Lord:
(Note: Those Who Receive This Via Email Will Need To Visit The Blog To Watch The Videos:)
Elder Perry On The Priesthood: Part 1:
He mentioned some great verses from the 84th Section of the Doctrine & Covenants in that video, and I would like to list them here, then briefly discuss them after the second video by Elder Perry.
"Like the sons of Mosiah, “they had searched the scriptures diligently, that they might know the word of God.” (Alma 17:2.) And “they had given themselves to much prayer, and fasting; therefore they had the spirit of prophecy, and the spirit of revelation, and when they taught, they taught with power and authority of God.” (Alma 17:3.) And “they did suffer much, both in body and in mind, such as hunger, thirst and fatigue, and also much labor in the spirit.” (Alma 17:5.) But after the completion of an honorable mission, like Ammon, one of the sons of Mosiah, these missionaries can also say, “My joy is full, yea, my heart is brim with joy, and I will rejoice in my God.” (Alma 26:11.)"
Now, if you are like I was when I first heard those words as a young man, the challenge of accepting the Melchizedek Priesthood could seem daunting. There are at least two reasons why you should be confident rather than discouraged with the penalties that would follow either failing to keep the oath and covenant or deciding not to accept it. Whether you accept the oath and covenant and find it too difficult or if you fail to try, the penalty is the same. There is no question, therefore, that your best course and mine is to receive the holy priesthood and try with all of our hearts to keep its covenants. If we choose not to try, we would certainly lose the opportunity for eternal life. If we try and with God’s help succeed, we will gain eternal life."
I can admit I felt very.... weary for lack of a better term. I had hoped that as I took upon me this great responsibility, that I would not fall short of anything but pleasing to the Lord. Looking back on it now, it is obvious now the Lord is telling me (and perhaps others) that this is a blessing, rather than a mandate. All men should look upon this prestigious opportunity because greater blessings come of it! All this in combination with what is said in that same Section of the Doctrine and Covenants, but in verse 57, the Lord mentions that we need to
"...remember the new covenant, even the Book Of Mormon and the former commandments which I have given them, not only to say, but to do according to that which I have written-" (D & C 84:57)
I also recall back to when I received my Melchizedek Priesthood, the comfort that came to me in reading the words of the Lord which are also in the same section that says:
"...whoso receiveth you, there I will be also, for I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up." (D & C 84:88)
Why would he go so far to aid us? Well, a fraction of understanding can be found in verse 77 when He says, "....I say unto you my friends, for from henceforth I shall call you friends..."
Continuing with what President Henry B. Eyring spoke of.... he said:
"Let me describe some of the blessings you will receive as you go forward in faith.