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Sunday, November 17, 2013

Book of Mormon Class ~ Helaman chapter 12

Taught by Sue G.
(*you can click on a scripture to go to link to read it)

Chapter 12 is a "Thus We See" chapter in which Mormon explains the cycle of apostasy to us.  He also teaches us about the power of God and how foolish is to leave him out of our lives.  He even gives us a brief coarse in astronomy as he explains that it is the Earth that rotates rather than the sun's going around the earth as many believed in his day.

Elder Neal A Maxwell explored some possible reasons for spiritual unsteadiness.  

"It is simply unintended forgetfulness by our refusing to review and to acknowledge the repetition of such stern lessons, because we neglect the milder to gentler signs beckoning us to 
remember him"

We need the spirit daily, to help us remember daily.  Otherwise memory lapses will occur when we are most vulnerable .  It is not natural to the natural man to remember yesterdays blessings gratefully, especially when today's needs of the flesh press steadily upon us.

Pres. Henry B. Eyring added this insight about why we might be unsteady... "Dependence upon God can fade quickly when prayers are answered. When the trouble lessens, so do the prayers.  The book of Mormon repeats that sad story over and over again"

Helaman 12:1-6
From these verses what role does remembering or not remembering play in helping us avoid the pride cycle?

Mormon warns us that prosperity can be dangerous.  It doesn't have to be. Remember the 200 years of peace among the people in Third Nephi after the Saviors appearance to them, 
and the 225 years of wealth prosperity, 
righteousness and peace in Ether 9:15-25?  
Remember also what is said about wealth in Jacob 2:18-19.

Helaman 12:7-19

President Joseph Fielding Smith helped us understand that the phrase "the nothingness of the children of men" is not a reflection of man's worth.  Now this prophet did not mean to say that the Lord has greater concern for and loves the dust of the earth more than he does his children... the point he is making is that the dust of the earth is obedient.  All things are in harmony with his laws.  Every thing in the universe obeys the law given unto it, so far as I know except man.  Every where you look you find law and order, the elements obeying the law given to them true to their calling.  But man rebels and in this thing man is less than the dust of the earth because he rejects the counsels of the Lord.

Helaman 12:14-15 shows that Mormon had a basic understanding of the physical laws of the universe.  

These verses provide a subtle but certain assurance that the prophet educator Mormon like many of the ancient spiritual leaders, was anything but primitive in his understanding concerning God, man, and the universe.

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