I feel certain that if, in our homes, parents will read from The Book of Mormon prayerfully and regularly, both by themselves and with their children, the spirit of that great book will come to permeate our homes and all who dwell therein. The spirit of reverence will increase; mutual respect and consideration for each other will grow. The spirit of contention will depart. Parents will counsel their children in greater love and wisdom. Children will be more responsive and submissive to the counsel of their parents. Righteousness will increase. Faith, hope, and charity - the pure love of Christ - will abound in our homes and lives, bringing in their wake peace, joy, and happiness.
- President Marion G. Romney

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Alma 7 -- There is one thing of more importance than they all

It's Friday and we're on the last chapter of this Sunday's lesson material. Many of you didn't add your thoughts on chapter 6-- if you have things you'd like to add -- keep doing it all weekend.

Alma chapter 7 is Alma's sermon to the people in Gideon. According to Alma (vs. 3 & 5) , these people were in a much more righteous state than the people of Zarahemla.
*With this in mind, what are the differences between the two sermons?
*What about verses 7 & 8? What do they teach us about our time?
*If you feel it appropriate to share, what are some of your experiences with Jesus?
*How do verses 17-19 apply to us as parents? Teachers? Leaders?
*What other insights, thoughts, questions do you have?


Monica said...

A few thoughts: verse 9 is a very powerful verse and teaches us that we need to be prepared NOW. The prophets have been trying to tell us this forever basically because if we look at today when gas prices are climbing at great speed and how our economy is falling, how much better off we are if we have listened to the prophets and are prepared, if we have food storage to rely on if we were to loose a job, etc, how just being prepared and following the prophet's council will help us survive I think is vital.

I live in eastern, NC where hurricanes are previlent and if we do not have water storage or a 72 hour kit we will be in trouble should a hurricane hit and we loose power. We need to be prepared always for spiritual and physical needs.

Then in verse 15 it says that we need to be WILLING to repent. I really like that it talks about being WILLING because we know that we are supposed to repent and we know we need to do it but being willing is the key.

I really enjoyed vs 23 were it tells us that we need to be humble, submissive, gentle, easy to be entreated, full of patience and long suffering...I think of this as being a parent how all these things are qualities that we need when being a mother in how we act towards our children. Being patient is the most difficult for me and one that I work on everyday in different ways as children will challenge us as much as we love them. I felt this was an important verse as a mother to learn to do all these things when we are caring for our little children.

Janelle said...

I loved the change in tone. I could feel Alma's heart in this chapter. So soft. I hope I am more like the people in Gideon than Zarahemla. I imagine every prophet and obviously Christ has two sided. The tough guy call to repentance (like Christ at the Temple) and the soft cry to Come unto Christ as Alma does here.

Julie said...

Friday must be a busy day for everyone.
Janelle, I couldn't agree more. The thing that I really noticed in this chapter was the softness and the being able to just teach the pure character of Jesus Christ -- who he is, what he would do -- instead of the call to repentance that had to follow before the Zarahemlites could receive such doctrine. I also noticed that there was still a call to repentance, it was just in a much more gentle tone -- I feel like we must be more like the people of Gideon (as a whole) because General Conference tends to be more like this sermon. But then there are always a few of the talks that just cut to the core and I know that's something I must be lacking in. I find the comparison of these two chapters to be so significant. Which side (like you mentioned) are we going to be on.

Monica -- I liked your thoughts about verse 9. As I read the chapter last night, I kept thinking how similar our time is to what Alma describes in vs. 7 & 8. Christ will return soon. There is no doubt about it. But we don't know if we will be alive to witness that -- what I feel like Alma is trying to say here is it just doesn't matter if you're alive for it or not -- you'll be alive in the Spirit and you will be judged according to your worthiness and preparedness. So BE PREPARED! I liked your likening it to temporal preparedness, too. We have all the water drums downstairs in our cold storage, but guess what? They're empty. If we face an emergency situation, the empty containers will do us no good. Much the same as our membership in the church will do us no good if we have not continued to receive the necessary ordinances and then endured faithfully to the end.

I think we'll get those water drums filled up tomorrow!

TaLaisa said...

I love the way he describes Christ. I think that the difference in the sermons echo's our spiritual preparedness as well. When I have big heavy things weighing on my mind and things that need repenting, I am less likely to be prepared to hear the finer, simpler points. When I am doing as I should (like the people in Gideon) and am prepared to learn, I pick up on so many more things. My understanding is increased and my testimony grows by leaps and bounds.

I also really liked verses 23 and 24. I've heard these words and similar ones from our own modern day prophets, in conference. A gentle call to do better with what we've been blessed with. I certainly hope this means we are more like the people in Gideon.

I love in 24 where it says, "have faith, HOPE and charity, and then ye will always abound in good works." I have struggled with depression and the long gloomy bouts always seem to start with a loss of hope. I feel great hope when my testimony is being increased. And that serves as a great preventative to the gloom.

Julie said...

TaLaisa -- I love your thoughts about hope. Great insight.

TaLaisa said...

I had a very faith building experience while reading our last chapter for the week. I posted about it on my 'open mouth, insert thought' blog. Click on my name to go read it.

I really want to share it because I believe this blog and the reading and swapping of insights, played a part. But it is so long, I didn't want to take up extra space here as well.

Amanda D said...

I am in awe at all the insights of each of you each day. I read the chapter, and pick up on a few small things and then I read the comments and learn so much more.

I loved Monica's thought on verse 9, and verse 15 where he points out the need for us to be willing. I need to read the verses that remind us to be patient everyday. I find that I don't have much patience with my children...I do in other things, but not so much with my kids. I need to work on all things in verse 23. I loved how he reminded us to ask for what we need AND say thank you for what we get.

And I truly enjoyed how he closed it with a reminder that if we do what is right, we will have the peace of God with us. And isn't that the goal anyway?