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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Sunday Lesson -Revelation

Taught by Tracy H.

“Revelation is communication from God to His children on the earth and one of the great blessings associated with the gift and constant companionship of the Holy Ghost.”

In the April 2011 General Conference, Elder Bednar states that the spirit of revelation is available to every person who receives, by proper priesthood authority, the saving ordinances of baptism by immersion for the remission of sins and the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost - and who is acting in faith to fulfill the priesthood injunction to receive the Holy Ghost.

This blessing is not restricted to the presiding authorities of the Church: rather it belongs to and should be operative in the life of the every man, woman, and child who reaches the age of accountability and enters into sacred covenants. Sincere desire and worthiness invite the spirit of revelation into our lives.

We prepare to receive revelation by studying the scriptures, fasting, praying and building faith.  

How is this revelation conveyed to us?  It is usually not received immediately and intensely, although it can be.  Instead, we usually receive it gradually and subtly.  We need to be patient and understand that we will not receive revelation on our timetable but on Heavenly Fathers. 

We, as members of the Church, tend to emphasize marvelous and dramatic spiritual manifestations so much that we may fail to appreciate and may even overlook the customary pattern by which the Holy Ghost accomplishes His work. The very “simpleness of the way” of receiving small and incremental spiritual impressions that over time and in totality constitute a desired answer or the direction we need may cause us to look “beyond the mark”.  (Elder Bednar, April 2011, General Conference)

Some great examples of personal revelation in church history include Lehi and the Liahona, Nephi and the slaying of Laban to retrieve the Brass Plates, Joseph Smith and the first vision and many many more.

In many of the uncertainties and challenges we encounter in our lives, God requires us to do our best, to act and not be acted upon and to trust Him.  We may not see angels, hear heavenly voices, or receive overwhelming spiritual impressions. We frequently may press forward hoping and praying - but without absolute assurance - that we are acting in accordance with God’s will. 

But as we honor our covenants and keep the commandments, as we strive ever more consistently to do good and to become better, we can walk with the confidence that God will guide our steps.  And we can speak with the assurance that God will inspire our utterances.  This is in part the meaning of the scripture that declares, “Then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God” (D&C 121:45).


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