"For the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light..."
August 26, 2006

Inside Out

The Lord works from the inside out. The world works from the outside in. The world would take people out of the slums. Christ takes the slums out of people, and then they take themselves out of the slums. The world would mold men by changing their environment. Christ changes men, who then change their environment. The world would shape human behavior, but Christ can change human behavior. — President Ezra Taft Benson, Conference Report, October 1985, p. 5

May 11, 2006

Step by Step

“Implicit and explicit in the concept of a gospel taught by degrees instead of all at once (”line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little, and there a little” (2 Nephi 28:30)) is the idea that the most important, the highest, and the holiest teachings come last.

“This is the exact opposite of the reasoning of the Christian world today, that the most important teachings must have come first, so that everything essential is known while anything that may have escaped is not really vital.

“Few would dispute that the higher and holier a teaching is, the fewer are qualified to hear it: One need only recall the Lord’s practice of discussing “the mysteries of the kingdom of heaven” only with his disciples behind closed doors and of selecting only a few chosen apostles to share in the still greater mysteries such as the transfiguration.
“All Christians, indeed, agree that the most glorious manifestations are reserved for the end. But the importance of a teaching is not measured by its depth and wonder but by the particular need of the person receiving it. God does give people at all times what are for them the most important teachings that could possibly be given.” — Hugh Nibley, ” . . . But unto Them It Is Not Given,” CWHN 7:107-8

March 7, 2006

Abraham Becoming like God

“Who was Abraham trying to become like? God. The ultimate end of the covenant is to become perfect, like God. The Hebrew word for that is THUMMIM. That means ‘perfection’ in the whole and complete sense and not the LDS cultural sense, where you bake all your bread, paint your house, have all your kids clean and dressed and studying the scriptures every morning at 5:30. It is the perfection of God in uprightness and dependability, and integrity. The name of the Urim and Thummim is ‘lights’ and ‘perfections.’”

“What color are they? White. White stones shining in a dark place teaching uprightness and perfection. They are a type of Christ, to reveal the name of God. They teach you to become like him. So how did the Book of Mormon get to us? Through the Urim and Thummim, a light in darkness. Recall also that the Book of Mormon came through the veil. Where did Joseph sit, and where was Oliver? Joseph was on one side of the veil, and Oliver on the other. It came by Urim and Thummim, through the veil! It ended up on this side of the veil, with Oliver writing it. It is typological, isn’t it? Right now, the Lord is hidden, and cannot be seen. But at the Second Coming, the veil is lifted and all will see. So the Urim and Thummim are on one side, because they represent Him, and the word coming through the veil to Oliver, and we get the Book of Mormon. All this is done through the wisdom of God who does all things from the beginning to typify Christ. It may seem a strange thing to have a translation that way, but the whole thing is strange, from beginning to end. That is scriptural.”– Robert J. Norman