Sunday, July 10, 2011

GD: Lesson 25 Class Notes

Mark 14:32-42
- watch, sleep, rest, temptation
- what was Savior feeling?  Heavy - surprised - awestruck at the weight
- shrink not - to not back off or pull away
- this is what he was sent to do - the full measure of his creation

Matt 26:36-46
- He asked his friends to watch - to stay awake - to watch and pray
- Where are we asked to watch?
- to live the gospel
- to watch and listen to the sacrament (prayers)
- how: repenting and remembering
- watch = remember - stay awake - pay attention - to not be pre-occupied
- watch = desire

Watch and Pray least you fall into Temptation
- temptation from what?
- physical weakness
- they needed to stay awake and witness because they were special witnesses of Christ

Physical vs. Spiritual
- your physical bodies are going to give you warnings --> watch!
- Christ: "watch me. watch what I do"

My side note: Desire - does it have to build to be strong enough to overcome the physical weakness?  Do we get find we are giving too much ground, that we get to a point that our desire to not give in in finally strong enough to overcome?

Why did he ask the cup to pass?
- it had to be the will of the Father
- "I love my father so much, I take this cup" DESIRE
- the Savior goes back to the bitter cup three times.
- his love/desire for his father is what caused him to shrink not

Is your faith strong enough to have the cup NOT removed?

Alma 7:11-12
- pains, afflictions & temptations
- sickness
- death
- infirmities

It is worth it.

Sunday, July 3, 2011

GD: Lesson 24 Class Notes

Holy Ghost
- bears witness - teaches - testifies of Christ
- John 16:1-15
- Oaks: Holy Ghost leads sincere seekers to repentance

-John 16:13-15
- HG guides to all truth; shows us things that are to come; glorifies the Savior

John 17 The Intercessory Prayer
- Jesus stands between us and God and intercedes

To know God and Jesus Christ
- to have a personal relationship with them
- it is a transformative relationship; it unlocks his power in our lives
- we know him by keeping the commandments
- the degree we know them is the degree that we act like them.

John 17:4-8
- reported to God what he had done
- do we return and report in our prayers?

Friday, June 24, 2011

GD: Lesson 23 Class Notes

How has/does God love us?
- He gave his son - sacrifice

Hoe does Christ love us?
- knelt in garden
- honor, obedience, humility, submission, reverence

- sacrifice and obedience
How do these bring about divine love?
- service to family

As a young boy, love was when something done for you - receiving.
As a missionary and young adult, love was different; meant service to others - our initiative to help others.
As a husband, love of spouse - profound, deep.
As a father, love of child and children is deep - immense desire for them to be happy.

Sister Fishcher told of story of her son.  While on his mission, he fasted for two weeks so he could use his food money to help a family who needed the food.

Love - the moment of becoming a father or mother.  This is God's design that we experience being parents.  To break this decision is to go against God.

He didn't stop at families.  He said love thy neighbor; love thy enemies.

Upon these hang the laws and prophets.

John 17:24-26 - Christ is our advocate.  We must become like Christ, therefore we must be an advocate for those people who are around us.
- Serve - pray - teach - sacrifice - blessed - ordinances.

Do we pray for those we serve by name?

Sunday, June 19, 2011

GD: Lesson 22 Class Notes

Matt 25:1-13 The Ten Virgins
- bridegroom = savior
- virgins = members of the Church
- wedding = Second Coming
- oil = readiness, preparation and testimony of the members of the Church

Degrees of Preparation
- prepare for the big stuff, but not the perishables
- prepare for war, hope for a battle

Aesop - Ant & Grasshopper

How We Are Not Deceived
D&C 45:56-57 heard and did
- you can't share your covenants and your actions - they belong only to you.
- will you be able to say 'I shared with you as much as I could?'

President Kimball 1978
The oil of family prayer, of fasting, of word of wisdom
- home service - visits to the sick, HT, VT
- temple ordinances

Parable of the Talents
5 + 5 = 10 + 1 = 11
2 + 2 = 4
1 + 0 = 1 - 1 = 0
- servants = us
- talents = our talents, whatever God has given us
- reward = rule of many things
? can talents also be our trials?  opportunities to serve?

Sheep & Goats
- Yom Kippur
- scape goat

Take what is given you and develop it

Saturday, June 11, 2011

GD: Lesson 21 Class Notes

What Shall be the Sign of Thy Coming?

JS Matt 1:1-2
- temple at Jerusalem be destroyed
- in 70 AD Jerusalem and temple destroyed
- millions killed and carried away captive

First Time "Christ will come"
Second Time "Christ will come"

We won't see him until we say "we believe" (verse 1)

- false prophets; Jews scattered, earthquakes, darkness
- love of man will wax cold

Why Signs?
- Lord warns before acts - look to him
- we won't / don't know when our end is.  There is always a need to prepare ie 10 Virgins
- when Matt 14 takes place, it's about 48 hours before atonement
- he goes to Mt of Olives and is transfigured

JS Matt 1:5-15
- they come in my name - people claim authority
- "the Lot principal" - just get out, don't go back to get anything
- the very elect of the covenant are deceived
- member of the Church who have been to the temple
- members who are not deceived are those who treasure up the wod of God - verse 37
- 1st 3 questions of temple recommend are not about worthiness, but are about our testimony
- can we?  do we? turn scriptures, tithing, temple, prayer into our own Rameumptoms - Pharisee?
- people fall out of the Church like they fall out of bed - they fall out because they didn't get in far enough!
- we cannot become comfortable, we must take comfort
- faith without works is death - our "lists"
- works without faith is death
- we need to change our hearts

Christ reserves right to baptize with fire

Lists are gold, but we need to check our hearts.

v. 41-43 - business as usual until the rains came
ark = covenant

Get in the boat, stay in the boat.

Heart = desire --> leads to actions
- the lists are practice for insistent desires

* the teacher drew a picture of a 'personal Rameumpton' where we build ourselves up with our 'lists' of keeping the commandments and doing what is right.  The tower is built up with lists; with us standing on top.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

GD: Lesson 19 Class Notes

Luke 18:1-8 - The Unjust Judge
What is the Savior trying to teach?
- If an unjust judge would avenge the woman's adversary, then God, who is just would answer saints' prayers.
- Pray always and faint not - faith.
- Shall he find faith on Earth - Joseph B. Wirthlin, October 2002
- connection between faith and persistence
- look for pattern in scriptures: to go again, go back again

FAITH: again, action, experience - enduring
- confidence, action, conforming to the will of the Lord
- again; strips away our temporal dependancies, allowing us to rely wholly on the Lord

Luke 18:35-43 - The Blind Man
- Focus on desire, yearning of blind man
- he asked what the commotion was
- once he knew Jesus was there, he cried out
- some tried to silence him, but he cried out more
- he could have begged with the lots of people, but he didn't.  he asked for his sight.

Luke 19:1-10 - Zaccheus The Publican
- Zaccheus wants to see the Savior, climbs a tree
- Christ calls him down; dines at his house
- deals differently with Zaccheus than with young rich man

John 11 at Bethany
- home of his friends Mary, Martha and Lazarus
- Lazarus is sick; they send for Jesus
- two days pass - Lazarus dies
- Jesus to "prove" his power - others healed, but now it is certain this man is dead
- Martha believed - knew Jesus could have saved him
- Jesus asks her to move stone - 'he stinketh' - 'said I not unto thee' - then she moved stone - Mary believed

Monday, May 23, 2011

GD: Lesson 18 Class Notes

* Rejoicing over those who repent - more so than the 99
* The finder is the shepard
* He is a 100% guy - concerned for the 99  and 1
* Our reaction as parents is to jump in and save our children, but sometime we have to let the finder find them
* Desire leads to works leads to seeking more
* There is urgency in the shepard's life
* How did you feel when your child was lost?
- Urgent, quick, panic, rejoice, rebuke ... all of these emotions because of love

* We are all the lost
* Are they looking for the shepard?

* Different than sheep or coin - he wants to get lost
* Wishing he could eat pig slop
* Riotous living
* Lost inheritance
* Proud - smelly - then humble

* Angry, did not come
* Jealous
* Obedient to all commandments
* Confused
* Ungrateful

* Compassion, waiting
* Prayerful, love
* Forgiveness
* Permissive

Be grateful for what you have.  Rejoice in repentance no matter who it is.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

GD: Lesson 17 Class Notes

The Rich Man
Mark 10:17-21
Jesus beholding him loved him.

Why did Lord ask him to give up all his possessions?
- to give up pride
- his heart was with his possessions - not really with God
- preferred to rely on wealth

:23-25 rich man in kingdom of God; camel in eye of needle

Mark 12:41-44 Widow's Mite
She gave it all.  Young man did not give everything.  The woman gave her heart, the man did not.

Where is your heart?

Luke 12:13-15 'Man's life consisteth not in the abundance of things which he possesseth'

:16-21 Parable of rich man and store
- take thine ease
- didn't endure to the end

Luke 14 Parable of the Feast
- invited guests didn't come.  Too busy with life
- the poor are the Gentiles

Sunday, May 8, 2011

GD: Lesson 16 Class Notes

John 9-10

Feast of the tabernacle - lights

9:1-7 Jesus heals the blind man
Disciples: who sinned?  Why did they ask this?  It was part of the culture - an eye for an eye.

Look at this story from each of the participant's point of view.
Blind Man

Jesus declares to blind man I am the light.

This blind man was at the end of his rope; he now knew and found purpose in his life - to be the one that is shown the Glory of God.

Pharisees did not believe.

Parents were kind of wishy-washy.

Blind Man - I know I was blind and now I'm not.  I told you already - he declares his discipleship.  Christ had opened his spiritual eyes.

Bear your testimony and it will be revealed to you.

The Large and Spacious building is getting louder; we are all the blind man.  We must arrive at the same conclusion the blind man arrived at.

Humility in all things.  Ordinances are to help us be humble so that we can successfully come to Christ.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

GD: Lesson 15 Class Notes

John 7:14-17
How do you know they are true?
If you do God's will, you will know.

Alma - experiment upon the word of God

It requires faith to try.

More testimonies are gained on feet rather than on knees.

Adulterous woman - Sadducee's and Pharisees brought her to Christ to try to trap him - to try to make him blaspheme against the Law of Moses.

Jehovah wrote the Law of Moses with his finger.  Christ wrote in the dirt while he spoke to the Sadducee's and Pharisees.

John 8:12, D&C 84:45-46 - word of the Lord = truth = light.  Christ is the source of truth and light and knowledge.

John 8:31-36

Truth is revealed from the Holy Ghost - revelation.

John 8:43-59 Christ identifies himself as Jehovah.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

GD: Lesson 14 Class Notes

Matt 18:1, Mark 9:33-34, Matt 18:2-4, Matt 18:6

Matt 18:21
D&C 64:8-10

Mosiah 4:16-19

The natural man will compare and rank.  Even in the animal kingdom, there is an 'alpha.'

As a child ...
- confidence, but not 'I am better'
- they acknowledge there is a higher power
- trust, teachable - pure as a child

1) Conversion to the Gospel and 2) Humilty

18: 6 - children and people new in the Gospel

18:21 how often do I need to forgive?

Disciples asked questions.  We need to be thinking, pondering and asking questions too.

D&C 64:8-10 forgive always - in your heart.  The Lord asks: how many times do you want me to forgive you?

We are the unmerciful servant.

Don't withold your forgiveness


Atonement can help us forgive by healing our wounds.

God's plan is a plan of happiness.  This is another ingredient to gaining happiness.

* the priest/father in Les Miserables

Sunday, April 17, 2011

GD: Lesson 13 Class Notes

What is the most important decision you have made or will make?
- college/career
- marriage/family
- to know Christ - the receiving of revelation

Matt 16:13

John 17:3
Eternal life = to know Jesus Christ

REVEALING - all the talks today in sacrament meeting talked about a desire to know.  They talked about how it was then revealed to them.

Sean Masters (farewell) - all his life he was taught and believed that if you lied, your nose would grow or that if you wished upon a star, your wish would come true; that Jesus died and lived again.  Soon he understood what was true and what was a fairy tale.  Later, he went through a rebellious stage - around the age of 16.  One day he was in a temple interview with Brother Jeff Dean.  Sean admired Jeff because Jeff played the guitar.  Jeff asked Sean if he wanted to serve a mission.  In his mind Sean was saying no, but his mouth was saying 'maybe'.  From then on, he had a desire to serve a mission.  He read the Book of Mormon.  He prayed about it.  He felt good as he prayed about the Book of Mormon ... "the greatest feeling in the world."

Moses 1:39 God wants us to win - to make it.

Matt 16:16 rock = revelation
:19 the key to revelation for the church

Talk from Elder Bednar in April 2011 General Conference (The Spirit of Revelation).
Paragraph 5: Holy Ghost = revelator

We have a decision to make: are we going to seek revelation or not?

Paragraph 12: line upon line (Sean's talk) - the time wasn't right and then it was.

Why line upon line?

Example of Elder Scott - he asks, writes it down, then asks: is there more?  He writes more down and asks: is there more ... repeats.

DESIRE: To know it as God knows it and to do it as God does it.

BoM: hard heart, see angel, did not change

Ether 12:6 no witness until after the trial of faith.

Steven Moore - was going to Church and seminary, etc ... but it was just in case it was true.  "Covering bases" vs. actual knowledge

searching ... studying ... searching ... studying ... I need to do this ... I need to do the work.

Helaman 5:12 - why do you need to know Christ?  So you don't get knocked off; so you don't thwart the work of God

Sunday, April 10, 2011

GD: Lesson 12 Class Notes

John 5:1-16
- Jesus healed man on the sabbath
:17 my father worketh hitherto and I work

Scribes and Pharisees were stuck on the Law.

:28-29 while studying these verses, Joseph and Sidney Rigdon received vision of three degrees of glory (D&C 76).

:31-39 John, God, the scriptures, all testify of Christ - also of Christ's works.  Search the scriptures.

John 6 - feeds the 5000

:1-14 someone brought bread and fish.  There was an offering and Christ multiplied it.

Matt 14:23-33 Christ walks on water.  Peter doubted, but he did step out of the boat.

John 6:27 labor for meat that endures.

work of God = believe in God

Sunday, March 20, 2011

GD: Lesson 11 Class Notes

"He spake many things unto them in parables"

Why did Jesus teach in parables?
* Symbolic at multiple levels
* Those who loved Christ understood the parable, those who were against Him, the lesson was hidden
* Lesson is hidden to the hard-hearted
* Instructs to those who are seeking truth
* An act of mercy to those where little is expected (ie much given; much expected)
* They are milk to prepare the spiritual stomach of those who would eat the meat of the Gospel

Parable of the Seeds
* Wayside = people w/ hard hearts, the wicked
* Stony Places = those who believe weakly, but don't endure
* Thorns = worldly, give in to natural man (ie rich young man)
* Good Soil = saints, those who endure
All of these conditions can be various conditions of our hearts.  Depending on the doctrine, we may receive it with 'good soil' or with a 'stony place'

Parable of Wheat & Tares
Why did Lord allow tares to grow with the wheat?
* Opposition in all things
* Wheat gets stronger b/c of tares
* Tares and wheat look similar at first, but as they mature, it is clear what is wheat and which is tares; therefore, to not destroy the wheat, both are allowed to grow until it is settled which is which.

Parable of the Leaven
* Underscores growing process
* Talmage says, "The process of leavening, or causing dough 'to rise,' by fermentation of yeast placed in the mass, is a slow one, and moreover as quiet and seemingly secret as that of the planted seed growing without the sower's further attention or concern." (271, Jesus the Christ)
* Also, see Note 7 of  chapter 19 in Jesus the Christ - it talks about the difference between the leaven in this parable and the 'leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees' and the 'leaven of Herod'

Parable of the Hidden Treasure
* The kingdom of Heaven is worth everything
* The finder stumbled upon it
* After finding it, he still has to go and sell all that he has to purchase it

Parable of the Pearl of Great Price
* The kindom of Heaven is worth everything in this parable as well
* The seeker actively sought the pearl as opposed to stumbling upon it
* Also after finding it, the seeker still had to go and sell all that he had to purchase it, so in both parables, the seeker/finder had to do additional work after their discovery.

Parable of the Gospel Net
* The good fish are put to usefulness while the bad are entirely wasted

Sunday, March 13, 2011

GD: Lesson 10 Class Notes

"Take my yoke upon you and learn of me"

Examples of knowing in theory vs. actually doing.
* Raising kids, teaching, riding a bike, going on a mission, child birth, tasting a lemon

Christ has actual knowledge.  How did Christ learn of us?
* Tempted
* Alone
* Afflictions, illness, pains
* Forsaken
* Took upon our sins

We need to allow Him in.

IF you take my yoke upon you, THEN you learn of me.
IF you are meek and lowly, THEN you will find rest.

D&C 121 - many are called, but few are chosen
Controlled upon principals of righteousness ... yoke is for control.

Sometime we have an opportunity, but we don't take it.  ie forgiveness.
How do you move to action?
* Doctrines of the priesthood distill upon our souls
* Pride, anger gets in the way.  We need to be meek.
* Come unto me (to solve your problems)
* Meek means responsive?  Progression

Mosiah 3:18 - Natural man ... unless he yields ... submissive

D&C 122:7 - "all these things shall give thee experience, and shall be for thy good" .. they will help you learn of me.

Meek = teachable

Mark E. Petersen said, "Do you suppose for one minute that you can separate the salvation of your soul from the obedience to the Gospel?"  Mark E. Petersen, "“What Will a Man Give?”", Ensign, Jan. 1974, 110

Heart - how is it used in the scriptures?

Come follow me; come learn of me.

Sister Hansen then closed by playing the last testimony of Bruce R. McConkie.  I found that someone has uploaded this talk on YouTube.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

GD: Lesson 9 Class Notes

My notes were kind of sparse this week.  Not sure what I'll get out of them, but I'll post anyway.

Alms - Matt 6:1-2 - fast offerings
Motive - right conduct for the right reasons.
How do you balance this with the doctrine 'let your light so shine'?  ie see your good works whereas alms are not to be seen.

Prayer - Matt 6:5-8
Forgiveness - Matt 6:14-15
Fasting - Matt 6:16-18
Treasure - Matt 6:19-21

Character, perfection & attributes.

How we spend our disposable time is where our treasure is - priorities.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

GD: Lesson 8 Class Notes

Beatitudes. Name given to certain declarations of blessedness in the Sermon on the Mount (Matt. 5:3–11, cf. Luke 6:20–22). They describe certain elements that go to form the refined and spiritual character, and all of which will be present whenever that character exists in its perfection. Rather than being isolated statements, the Beatitudes are interrelated and progressive in their arrangement. A more comprehensive and accurate listing is found in 3 Ne. 12 and JST Matt. 5, where a greater spiritual emphasis is given.

Poor in spirit: Lack of pride.  Humility, submission

Mourn: The Lord comforts; so must we

Meek: Meekness is not weakness.  Power without arrogance; God-fearing and righteous.

Hunger & thirst after righteousness: How do we turn our appetite from things of the world to things of God/scriptures?  You have to acquire a taste for it first.

Merciful: "Therefore, my son, see that you are merciful unto your brethren; deal justly, judge righteously, and do good continually; and if ye do all these things then shall ye receive your reward; yea, ye shall have mercy restored unto you again; ye shall have justice restored unto you again; ye shall have a righteous judgment restored unto you again; and ye shall have good rewarded unto you again." Alma 41:14

Pure in heart: "Verily, thus saith the Lord: It shall come to pass that every soul who forsaketh his sins and cometh unto me, and calleth on my name, and obeyeth my voice, and keepeth my commandments, shall see my face and know that I am" D&C 93:1  Brother Lin made a comment after citing 1 John 3:2 and Moroni 7:48.  He said that perhaps we see God in others.

Peacemakers: Someone who invites the Spirit, removes contention.

Persecuted: is persecution a blessing?  Exodus 1:12 "But the more they afflicted them, the more they multiplied and grew."

"I am like a huge, rough stone rolling down from a high mountain; and the only polishing I get is when some corner gets rubbed off by coming in contact with something else, striking with accelerated force against religious bigotry, priestcraft, lawyer-craft, doctor-craft, lying editors, suborned judges and jurors, and the authority of perjured executives, backed by mobs, blasphemers, licentious and corrupt men and women--all hell knocking off a corner here and a corner there. Thus I will become a smooth and polished shaft in the quiver of the Almighty, who will give me dominion over all and every one of them, when their refuge of lies shall fail, and their hiding place shall be destroyed, while these smooth-polished stones with which I come in contact become marred" (Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith, 304).

Savor, Light, Salt: Salt=preserver.  It is our responsibility to share the light we have.  If we don't?  Alma to Corianton, "Suffer not yourself to be led away by any vain or foolish thing; suffer not the devil to lead away your heart again after those wicked harlots. Behold, O my son, how great iniquity ye brought upon the Zoramites; for when they saw your conduct they would not believe in my words." Alma 39:11 (emphasis added)

Not to destroy, but to fulfill: Don't follow scribes and Pharisees

Anger: If someone is angry with you, then you are not worthy.  There are no reasons to be angry.  You cannot feel the Spirit and be angry.

Agree with thine adversary: this is another way of saying 'be a peacemaker'  We are to resolve disputes.

Adultery: we cannot let the natural man take root in our soul.  We can update the scriptures to say "And if a movie (or fill in the blank) offend thee, get thee out of there and far from there: for it is profitable for thee that you lose the $7.00 price of admission and not that thy whole soul should be cast to hell." Matthew 5:29 (modified).

Divorce: Elder Bruce R. McConkie: "Divorce is not part of the gospel plan.... But because men in practice do not always live in harmony with gospel standards, the Lord permits divorce for one reason or another, depending upon the spiritual stability of the people involved.... Under the most perfect conditions there would be no divorce permitted except where sex sin was involved. In this day divorces are permitted in accordance with civil statutes, and the divorced persons are permitted by the Church to marry again without the stain of immorality which under a higher system and in a better civilization would attend such a course." (Doctrinal New Testament Commentary, 1:547) (I found this quote here)

<<lack of time to cover rest of less>>

Love thy neighbor: Be ye therefore perfect - strive to be complete.

Monday, February 21, 2011

GD: Lesson 7 Class Notes

Sister Hansen showed this picture to begin the class.  She asked for our impressions.  Here are what class members said:
* Light streaming through the window
* Trust in child's eyes, parents' trust
* Room seems dark, Christ bringing girl out of darkness
* Christ in a position to help, girl is making an effort
* Sunrise - new day
* We watch over childre, but ultimately Christ watches over use and the child must learn to depend on the Lord

Mark 5:22-23, 35
"Be not afraid, only believe"

What makes our live tulmulteous?
* Fear, stress, unsolved problems, sin/issues
* The many demands of life
* Lack of faith
* Gap between our expectations and the reality
* Lack of control

<<Faith preceded the miracle, not the other way around>>

Mark 8:22
* Led the man out of the town (limited audience - the same as with the daughter of Jarius)
* Personal miracle

Mark 8:27
Whom do men say that I am?
Who do ye say that I am?
Do we answer the same as Peter?

Mark 4:37
Christ can calm the sea.  He can also calm the sailor.

Ether 2:23
The winds and waves drove the Jaradites, but the inner light kept them calm!
This is the same as with some of our trials.  God may not solve them for us, but he can guide us and help us to endure them well (calm the sailor).  Without the winds and waves, the Jaradites would never have been able to cross the sea.

Master the Tempest is Raging

Verse 1
Master, the tempest is raging.
The billows are tossing high.
The sky is o'er shadowed with blackness,
no shelter or help is nigh.
Carest Thou not that we perish?
How canst Thou lie asleep,
when each moment so madly is threatning,
a grave in the angry deep?

The winds and the waves
shall obey my will, peace be still.
Whether the wrath of the storm-tossed sea
or demons, or men, or whatever it be.
No water can swallow the ship where lies
the Master of ocean and earth and skies;
they shall sweetly obey my will,
peace be still, peace be still.
They all shall sweetly obey my will;
peace, peace be still.

Verse 2
Master, with anguish of spirit I bow in my grief today.
The depths of my sad heart are troubled.
Oh, waken and save, I pray!
Torrents of sin and of anguish
sweep o'er my sinking soul,
And I perish! I perish! dear Master.
Oh, hasten and take control!


Verse 3
Master, the terror is over, the elements sweetly rest.
Earth's sun in the calm lake is mirrored,
and heaven's within my breast.
Linger, O blessed Redeemer!
Leave me alone no more,
and with joy I shall make the blest harbor
and rest on the blissful shore.


Sunday, February 13, 2011

GD: Lesson 6 Class Notes

At Second Coming, all will recognize and confess He is Christ.  But at His first coming, not all confessed.

Luke 4:16-21
The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised,
To preach the acceptable year of the Lord

Isaiah 61:1-2
The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me; because the Lord hath anointed me to preach good tidings unto the meek; he hath sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to them that are bound;
To proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord, and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all that mourn

Even though the two passages are not identical, the spirit of the message is what is important.

Luke 4:22-27
The people in this passage were not Jewish.  The prophets did not heal.

Luke 4:28
The people, after Christ declared He is the Messiah, were not happy.  They tried to kill him immediately.

God does not act the way we are preconditioned to believe.

What do we learn from this?  How do we keep from looking beyond the mark?
* Focus on the simple, every-day things.  For example, it would be a great effort to open the doors of nations now closed to missionaries; yet a simple thing as prayer can accomplish this great thing.
* Believing in Christ versus believing Christ.
* Do we listen to Christ's servants?  Do we follow them or discount them?

Calling of the Apostles

Luke 5:4-11
Brother Crockett talked about how this passage is so precious to him.  He is a fisherman.  He is a thorough fisherman and will "fish a hole dry."  One day, his father was talking about a hole and how great it was.  Brother Crockett said that it was dry.  His father cast in his line and caught a fish immediately!

Disciple vs. Apostle
Disciple is a follower; no authority.  An Apostle is "one sent forth" and has authority

Levi was a publican.  Brother Pierson read from some Catholic dictionary about what a publican is.  I found the wikipedia entry to be very similiar.

Publicans "were public contractors, in which role they often supplied the Roman legions and military, managed the collection of port duties, and oversaw public building projects. In addition, they served as tax collectors for the Republic (and later the Roman Empire), bidding on contracts (from the Senate in Rome) for the collection of various types of taxes. Importantly, this role as tax collectors was not emphasized until late into the history of the Republic (c. 1st century BC). The publicans were usually of the class of equites."

In the eyes of the Jews, publicans were the scum of the earth.

But Levi responded to the call.

How do we respond to calls?

Brother Pierson also pointed out the Bible Dictionary entry for prophet.  The last sentence reads, "in a general sense a prophet is anyone who has a testimony of Jesus Christ by the Holy Ghost."

Luke 6:12-13
Christ humbled himself before the Father and sought His direction to call the apostles.

How was the Quorum of the 12 reinstituted?  Twelve apostles were chosen by the Three Witnesses on February 14, 1835.

Matt 10:40-42; D&C 20:26
Those that receive the Lord's servants receive the Lord.

D&C 124:45
And if my people will hearken unto my voice, and unto the voice of my aservants whom I have appointed to lead my people, behold, verily I say unto you, they shall not be moved out of their place.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

NT: Mark 6:5-6 Commentary

First off, let me say that reading the NIV is enjoyable.  My NT teacher at BYU suggested this to us students.  I bought my NIV Bible at the BYU Bookstore.  It has been a tremendous help in studying the OT and NT.

Now I'm using it to read through the Gospels.  I'm first covering Mark, then I'll read Matthew and Luke together and then John.

So tonight, I came accross Mark 6:5-6 and it stunned me a bit.

It reads: "And he could there do no mighty work, save that he laid his hands upon a few sick folk, and healed them.

"And he marvelled because of their unbelief. And he went round about the villages, teaching."

Jesus could not heal everyone because of the people's lack of faith.  Faith of the healee (if that's a word) is vital.

Dallin H. Oaks said this in his talk  “Healing the Sick,” Ensign, May 2010, 47–50
"Faith is essential for healing by the powers of heaven. The Book of Mormon even teaches that “if there be no faith among the children of men God can do no miracle among them” ( Ether 12:12). 10 [See also 1 Nephi 7:12; Doctrine and Covenants 35:9] In a notable talk on administering to the sick, President Spencer W. Kimball said: “The need of faith is often underestimated. The ill one and the family often seem to depend wholly on the power of the priesthood and the gift of healing that they hope the administering brethren may have, whereas the greater responsibility is with him who is blessed. … The major element is the faith of the individual when that person is conscious and accountable. ‘Thy faith hath made thee whole’ [ Matthew 9:22] was repeated so often by the Master that it almost became a chorus.” 11 [“President Kimball Speaks Out on Administration to the Sick,” Tambuli, Aug. 1982, 36–37; New Era, Oct. 1981, 47]"
Also, as I was reading tonight about this passage as well as the passage where Jesus heals Jairus' daughter, this thought and question popped into my head: I imagined what it would have been like to hear of a man travelling the countryside healing all the sick.  Then I wondered what I would ask of this man - Jesus - if I were to cross his paths.  After pondering it a few moments, I would think I'd ask for stronger faith.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

GD: Lesson 5 Class Notes

Nicodemus - a Pharisee, member of the Sanhedrin (essentially the Jewish senate)

Christ did not answer Nicodemus' question; He answered the question Nicodumus should have asked.

John 3:5 Baptism by immersion and the gift of the Holy Ghost are required to be 'saved' - not just professing Christ as your savior.

Alma 5:14-16 - Have you been spiritually been born of God?
Can you see your future image - which is the standard to which we compare our 'current' selves?

Being born again is a gradual process.  What can we do to continue that process throughout our lives?
* Partake of the sacrament
* Do we cross lines that spur us to change?
* Cling to the Iron Rod - the scriptures
* Let the Spirit testify to us

John 3:16 - God the Father suffered too.
John 3:20 - Why do some never repent? "Lest his deed should be reproved" - afraid of reproval
On the flip side, in verse 21, when we do what is right and we repent, our deeds are made manifest.

What do we need to do with the light we've received?
* Share it with others

Living Water - never thirst again.  We are taught to thirst and hunger after righteousness (Matt 5:6)  In essence, Jesus is setting up perpetual motion of righteousness.

The Atonement is the Living Water; we can repent our whole lives.
The doctrines of the Gospel are Living Waters

Isaiah 12:2-3 - "Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid: for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also is become my salvation. 
"Therefore with ajoy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation"

John 4:31-36
* People are ready - to harvest
* Christ is the finisher - we can teach and lead, but Christ finishes the conversion

D&C 18 - one soul, great is our joy; how more great would be our joy if we bring many souls to Christ.

Monday, January 31, 2011

JTC: Chapter 10 Commentary

There were a few quotes that stood out in this chapter.

On page 123 with regard to the 2nd temptation of Jesus, Talmage says, "Satan tempted Jesus to tempt the Father.  It is as truly a blasphemous interference with the prerogatives of Deity to set limitations or make fixations of time or place at which the divine power shall be made manifest as it is to attempt to usurp that power.  God alone must decide when and how His wonders shall be wrought."

I think this is as good an explanation as any to those who would ask "Where is God in the world when there is so much suffering?"  God alone knows what is best for us - we should never presume to think we know better or what's best.

Another line that stood out was "triumph over the cravings of the flesh."  How wonderful it would be to triumph over the cravings of this flesh.  If one can control one's hunger, then I think one gains greater control over the cravings of the flesh.  A regular diet of fasting is healthy not only for the body, but for the spirit.

Lastly - what can we learn from the temptations of Jesus?  How can we apply these scriptures to our lives?

All must be tempted in all points.  This life is indeed a test.  If we view it in that paradigm, then we begin to view our challenges in a different light.  We will fail.  But what will we do after our failure is what is important.  Will we get back up and try again?  Or will we dis-engage and wallow?

Sunday, January 23, 2011

GD: Lesson 4 Class Notes

Hebrew - Messiah; Greek - Christ

Isaiah 40:3-5, 1 Nephi 10:7-10
Spirit of Elias - prepare the way for a greater revelation (Joseph Smith)

"The spirit of Elias is to prepare the way for a greater revelation of God, which is the Priesthood that Aaron was ordained unto. And when God sends a man into the world to prepare for a greater work, holding the keys of the power of Elias, it was called the doctrine of Elias, even from the early ages of the world."  See this link (TotPJS) for lots of information on Elias.

D&C 84:26-28 - Where did John the Baptist get his authority?
Was not his ordination to the Priesthood (McConkie)
Joseph Smith said something on this topic too (see below)

"As touching the Gospel and baptism that John preached, I would say that John came preaching the Gospel for the remission of sins; he had his authority from God, and the oracles of God were with him, and the kingdom of God for a season seemed to rest with John alone. The Lord promised Zacharias that he should have a son who was a descendant of Aaron, the Lord having promised that the priesthood should continue with Aaron and his seed throughout their generations. Let no man take this honor upon himself, except he be called of God, as was Aaron; and Aaron received his call by revelations. An angel of God also appeared unto Zacharias while in the Temple, and told him that he should have a son, whose name should be John, and he should be filled with the Holy Ghost. Zacharias was a priest of God, and officiating in the Temple, and John was a priest after his father, and held the keys of the Aaronic Priesthood, and was called of god to preach the Gospel of the kingdom of God. The Jews, as a nation, having departed from the law of God and the Gospel of the Lord, prepared the way for transferring it to the Gentiles." (link)

What did John the Baptist do to prepare the way?
* declared repentance and baptized

Mikvah - Jewish baptismal font - Jews were baptizing before John the Baptist.

Why was it important that there would be someone to prepare the way?
* John the Baptist set up things for the Kingdom of God
* if someone shows up and says "I am the Messiah" we won't believe him.  But if he says the Messiah is coming, when he comes we would believe.
* D&C 65:1-6 - Calling on all of us to prepare world and people that Christ is coming again.

Why did Jesus get baptized?
* to show humility before the father (2 Nephi)

John the Baptist only baptized but did not confer the Holy Ghost.  Jesus baptized, but gift of the Holy Ghost was not conferred until after the resurrection.
John 1:3-4 footnote

Temptations - Hebrews 2:18
The Lord went to commune with God.  Only after that communion (strengthening) was he tempted.

Do we "go into the wilderness" to fast, pray & ponder - to commune with God?

If thou be the Son of God
* He didn't doubt - He didn't need to "confirm"

David O McKay on temptation ("Unspotted from the World", Ensign, August 2009, 24–29)
"These evils present themselves insidiously in our daily associations. They come in the shape of temptations, as they came to the Savior after His baptism. What were those temptations? When Satan said, “Command that these stones be made bread” (Matthew 4:3), he was appealing to the appetite. He knew that Jesus was hungry, that He was physically weak, and [he] thought that by pointing to those little lime stones which resemble somewhat a Jewish loaf of bread, he could awaken a desire to eat. Failing in that, when he received the divine word, “Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4), Satan then tried Him in another way. He dared Him—an appeal to His pride, to His vanity. … But the Savior answered him in terms of scripture, “It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God” (Matthew 4:7). What was the third? An appeal to His love of power, domain, wealth: “All these things [the kingdoms of the world and the glory thereof] will I give thee,” said the tempter, “if thou wilt fall down and worship me” (Matthew 4:9). “Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve” (Matthew 4:10).

Now, nearly every temptation that comes to you and me comes in one of those forms. Classify them, and you will find that under one of those three nearly every given temptation that makes you and me spotted, ever so little may be, comes to us as (1) a temptation of the appetite; (2) a yielding to the pride and fashion and vanity of those alienated from the things of God; or (3) a gratifying of the passion, or a desire for the riches of the world, or power among men. …"

Sunday, January 16, 2011

GD: Lesson 3 Class Notes

Luke 2 - JST "inns" vs. inn

In what ways do we refust to make room for Jesus?
* too busy to pray or study scriptures
* demands of career are greater
* we don't treat prayer and scriptures study the same as eating, showering or sleeping

* not as the world giveth
* internal peace
* peace for me means knowing where I need to go or need to do - having a purpose in life.
* ultimately, Christ will reign on Earth and there will be peace

Why is it important to stop and ponder?
* we may miss important lessons in life.

What gifts can we give Jesus?
D&C 59 - sacrifice a broken heart and contrite spirit; keeping the commandments

What are things you can do to grow intellectually, physically, spiritually, socially?
* find a balance in life
* spend time in all areas

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Quick Update on Methodology

After thinking a bit more about this for the last few weeks - and deciding on what it is I want  out of this study - I decided that I will scratch the Religion 211/212 studies and instead focus on my study of the book Jesus the Christ.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

GD: Lesson 2 Class Notes

Zacharias and Elizabeth were:
* very righteous; had great faith and endurance in prayer
* in tune with the Lord and accepted the will of the Lord
* They knew the story of Abraham and Sarah - it was possible to have a child and elderly people

Why were they chosen?
* According to Talmage, had it worked out, Zacharias would have been High Priest
* Alma 13:3-4 - they chose the good; they had soft hearts
* Matt 20 - many are called, but few are chosen.

Are we missing out on foreordained callings because we don't choose the better part?  Or because our hearts are hardened?

Annunciation to Mary
How do we know if we've found favor with God?
* We don't have angels visiting us to tell us - how do we find validation?
* Mary did not doubt; she asked how it would be done

After the annunciation, Zacharias and Elizabeth reflected much and sanctified themselves.

Why chose a barren woman?
Our righteous desires will be fulfilled

Why chose an espoused woman?
The Lord comes into our lives at precise times.

What happened in their lives can happen our ours - our righteous prayers will be answered. God will come into our lives at precise times.

Multiple witnesses - Angels bare witness; Mary witnesses to Elizabeth and Joseph

* Angel appears to him in a dream
* He did as the angel bade him

* When he did as the angel bade him, by naming his son John, his tongue was loosed and he prophesied.
* Sent his son with his wife into the wilderness when Herod made his edict to kill all children.  He was slain protecting the knowledge of their location.

This last bit of infomaton was new to me.  I never knew that about Zacharias.  This is from Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith:

"Let us come into New Testament times--so many are ever praising the Lord and His apostles. We will commence with John the Baptist. When Herod's edict went forth to destroy the young children, John was about six months older than Jesus, and came under this hellish edict, and Zacharias caused his mother to take him into the mountains, where he was raised on locusts and wild honey. When his father refused to disclose his hiding place, and being the officiating high priest at the Temple that year, was slain by Herod's order, between the porch and the altar, as Jesus said. John's head was taken to Herod, the son of this infant murderer, in a charger--notwithstanding there was never a greater prophet born of a woman than him!" Section Five 1842-43, p.261