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Monday, August 17, 2009

Alma Ch. 34

Read it HERE.

SUMMARY: Amulek testifies that the word is in Christ unto salvation—Unless an atonement is made, all mankind must perish—The whole law of Moses points toward the sacrifice of the Son of God—The eternal plan of redemption is based on faith and repentance—Pray for temporal and spiritual blessings—This life is the time for men to prepare to meet God—Work out your salvation with fear and trembling. About 74 B.C.

This is a powerful chapter, and I learn more each time I read it.  One of my favorite teachers in the Book of Mormon is Amulek, and I think this chapter really shows his spiritual strength.

One of the most well-known verses in this chapter is verse 32: "For behold, this alife is the time for men to bprepare to meet God."  I often think about what life will be like when we have died and entered the spirit world.  How will we experience things?  What will it feel like?  Well, I found a quote that might explain some of why it is so important to repent now.

“It is my judgment that any man or woman can do more to conform to the laws of God in one year in this life than they could in ten years when they are dead. The spirit only can repent and change, and then the battle has to go forward with the flesh afterwards. It is much easier to overcome and serve the Lord when both flesh and spirit are combined as one. This is the time when men are more pliable and susceptible. We will find when we are dead every desire, every feeling will be greatly intensified. When clay is pliable, it is much easier to change than when it gets hard and sets.  --Melvin J. Ballard, The Three Degrees of Glory, pp.11–13

Another thing I really like about this chapter is the feeling I get from Amulek's exhortation to pray.  These verses are a little lengthy, but when I read them I feel how important he felt this principle is.  I almost hear the pleading in his voice, and it makes me want to remember to pray more often.

  18 Yea, cry unto him for mercy; for he is amighty to save.
  19 Yea, humble yourselves, and continue in aprayer unto him.
  20 Cry unto him when ye are in your afields, yea, over all your flocks.
  21 aCry unto him in your houses, yea, over all your household, both morning, mid-day, and evening.
  22 Yea, cry unto him against the power of your aenemies.
  23 Yea, acry unto him against the bdevil, who is an enemy to all crighteousness.
  24 Cry unto him over the crops of your fields, that ye may prosper in them.
  25 Cry over the flocks of your fields, that they may increase.
  26 But this is not all; ye must apour out your souls in your bclosets, and your secret places, and in your wilderness.
  27 Yea, and when you do not cry unto the Lord, let your ahearts be bfull, drawn out in prayer unto him continually for your cwelfare, and also for the welfare of dthose who are around you.

You know, I am not very good at remembering to pray often.  Many times in the morning I get up and go about my day without even thinking about praying.  But it is important!  It helps our spirits overcome the physical desires that might draw us farther from God.  If this life is the time to repent, I certainly want to make a lot of progress, and oh my heavens, do I need to make progress.  I can see that prayer is the best way to do that.

There is so much more to this chapter.  Amulek talks about the Atonement, our need for repentance and salvation, the Law of Moses, and so many other things.  What impressed you the most as you read?  What do you love about this chapter or about Amulek himself?


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