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Tuesday, 13 January 2015

Exact Obedience


In the Book of Mormon there is a story about two-thousand and sixty young men who go to war. Their parents had made oaths of pacifism and couldn't produce experienced warriors to aid their country's army. These 2,000 young boys offered their services to their nations efforts to defend their lands despite never having fought before. 

Before they left for battle their mothers taught them that if they were obedient, and they trusted in the Lord they would be delivered and protected.

In battle they were going to be used as a sort of decoy convoy, to lure the enemy army out of an advantageous position so the main Nephite army could attack and win. They were never asked to actually fight in war, however when the plan went wrong they had to make the decision to turn back and fight. They remembered what their mothers had taught them and they strove to be exactly obedient to the words and commands of their captain, Helaman.

After the battle they took the wounded from among the dead. Miraculously, even though ten percent of them fainted to the loss of blood, and all of them were seriously injured. not one of them died. They had been protected, and they won the battle.

Even though they emerged ultimately victorious they hadn't fought perfectly. Their enemy was more experienced, and significantly stronger. Maybe as individuals their own ability to fight was less than par and they made many mistakes, leading to serious and life threatening wounds. Even though they had made mistakes and been injured, they remained faithful to their leader's battle plan.

In our own lives we fall sometimes. We make mistakes. Many of us wind up with serious, spiritually life-threatening wounds. If we are willing to remain faithful to the battle plan our Lord and Saviour has given us, we will not be counted among the dead and fallen.

That battle plan is laid out in the covenants that we make with our Father in Heaven. Faithfulness to our covenants brings us protection, and ultimate deliverance, for it is by grace that we are saved after all we can do. This life is for preparing to meet our God. If we make and keep covenants with him, we apply the Saviour's atonement to ourselves. 

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