To start with…I asked Elder Hall how the week went with teaching. I also asked about the recent converts that the elders have had to see how they are doing. So here is a short update from him about those things.
The Elders are preparing four good people for baptism. Elder Hall offers a lesson and testimony on the love of the Lord.
I hope you all had a good week. My week was very good! Elder Tokolwana and I are preparing Victoria, Prince, Reuben, and Mary for baptism in early May now. They’re all doing very good and progressing well. Prince is the younger son of Ama, who we baptized on the 9th, so he has a lot of support because his older brother, David, is also a member. David and Prince actually went out proselyting with us three days this past week! They will make great missionaries one day. Being a missionary is a real joy! I have a wonderful companion; I have been blessed to meet so many wonderful people while I’ve been in Ghana, and even privileged to help a few of those beloved people come unto Christ. I know that the Lord loves us all, and because of that infinite love he has redeemed us from spiritual and physical death. I would like to talk about this briefly.
In the Book of Mormon, in Alma we read:
“And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people.
” …and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities.
” Now the Spirit knoweth all things; nevertheless the Son of God suffereth according to the flesh that he might take upon him the sins of his people, that he might blot out their transgressions according to the power of his deliverance; and now behold, this is the testimony which is in me.”
Christ took upon himself all of our sins, transgressions, pains, infirmities, sicknesses, temptations, afflictions and heartaches. Because of this he can help us, even succor us, through it all. Because of His infinite Atonement we can overcome the effects of our bad choices and improve, even progress through this mortal experience with joy.
2 Nephi 2:6-7
6 Wherefore, redemption cometh in and through the Holy Messiah; for he is full of grace and truth.
7 Behold, he offereth himself a sacrifice for sin, to answer the ends of the law, unto all those who have a broken heart and a contrite spirit; and unto none else can the ends of the law be answered
8 And now, behold, I will testify unto you of myself that these things are true. Behold, I say unto you, that I do know that Christ shall come among the children of men, to take upon him the transgressions of his people, and that he shall atone for the sins of the world; for the Lord God hath spoken it.
9 For it is expedient that an atonement should be made; for according to the great plan of the Eternal God there must be an atonement made, or else all mankind must unavoidably perish; yea, all are hardened; yea, all are fallen and are lost, and must perish except it be through the atonement which it is expedient should be made.
Job once asked a very important question: “If a man die, shall he live again?” (Job 14:14)
I know that because Christ rose from the dead and now lives, that we too shall live. Everyone who has ever lived or who ever will live on this Earth will be resurrected and live not only again, but forever.
Again in Alma we read:
” And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people…”
1 Corinthians 15:20-23
20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.
21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
7And if Christ had not risen from the dead, or have broken the bands of death that the grave should have no victory, and that death should have no sting, there could have been no resurrection.
8 But there is a resurrection, therefore the grave hath no victory, and the sting of death is swallowed up in Christ.
1 Corinthians 15:55
55 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory?
2 Nephi 2:8-9
8 Wherefore, how great the importance to make these things known unto the inhabitants of the earth, that they may know that there is no flesh that can dwell in the presence of God, save it be through the merits, and mercy, and grace of the Holy Messiah, who layeth down his life according to the flesh, and taketh it again by the power of the Spirit, that he may bring to pass the resurrection of the dead, being the first that should rise.
9 Wherefore, he is the firstfruits unto God, inasmuch as he shall make intercession for all the children of men; and they that believe in him shall be saved.
“Christ promises to forgive our sins on the condition that we accept Him by exercising faith in Him, repenting, receiving baptism by immersion, and the laying on of hands for the gift of the Holy Ghost, and striving faithfully to keep His commandments to the end of our lives. Through continuing repentance, we may obtain forgiveness and be cleansed of our sins by the power of the Holy Ghost. We are relieved of the burden of guilt and shame, and through Jesus Christ we become worthy to return to the presence of God.
“As we rely on the Atonement of Jesus Christ, He can help us endure our trials, sicknesses, and pain. We can be filled with joy, peace, and consolation. All that is unfair about life can be made right through the Atonement of Jesus Christ.
“In paying the penalty for our sins, Jesus did not, however, eliminate our personal responsibility. We must show that we accept Him and that we will follow His commandments. Only through the gift of the Atonement can we return to live with God.” (Preach My Gospel, Page 52)
“To have any measure of appreciation and gratitude for what [Jesus Christ] accomplished on our behalf, we must remember these vital truths:
Jesus came to earth to do our Father’s will.
He came with a foreknowledge that He would bear the burden of the sins of us all.
He knew he would be lifted on the cross.
He was born to be the Savior and Redeemer of all mankind.
He was able to accomplish His mission because He was the Son of God and He possessed the power of God.
He was willing to accomplish His mission because he loves us.”
(Ezra Taft Benson)
16 ¶For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
17 For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved.
Savior, Redeemer of My Soul – A Hymn
1. Savior, Redeemer of my soul,
Whose mighty hand hath made me whole,
Whose wondrous pow’r hath raised me up
And filled with sweet my bitter cup!
What tongue my gratitude can tell,
O gracious God of Israel.
2. Never can I repay thee, Lord,
But I can love thee. Thy pure word,
Hath it not been my one delight,
My joy by day, my dream by night?
Then let my lips proclaim it still,
And all my life reflect thy will.
3. O’errule mine acts to serve thine ends.
Change frowning foes to smiling friends.
Chasten my soul till I shall be
In perfect harmony with thee.
Make me more worthy of thy love,
And fit me for the life above.
I know that all that I have shared is indeed true: Jesus Christ truly is the Savior and Redeemer of the world. He is always there for us, if we turn to Him. I know that he loves us all and will continue to forever. because of him and his infinite atonement we can find peace and joy in this life and eternal life in the world to come. In the in the sacred name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Hope you all have a great week!