Traditions, scriptures, the role of the Holy Ghost, and Oneness

Do you ever read a piece of scripture you have wondered about your whole life and find that you suddenly understand it, and that it isn’t even very hard to understand, you have just been trying to force it to mean something other than what it says?

I think the section on judging good and evil in Moroni 7 could be the poster child for this. It is so very plain, but runs so counter to our culture’s obsession with calling evil good and good evil that it is hard to see through the murk and read the plainly written text.

However, for this post, the section that comes to mind is:

3 Nephi 11:35 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and I bear record of it from the Father; and whoso believeth in me believeth in the Father also; and unto him will the Father bear record of me, for he will visit him with fire and with the Holy Ghost.
36 And thus will the Father bear record of me, and the Holy Ghost will bear record unto him of the Father and me; for the Father, and I, and the Holy Ghost are one.
37 And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and become as a little child, and be baptized in my name, or ye can in nowise receive these things.

The Father bears record of the Savior by sending the Holy ghost so we “see him as He is” by becoming like him. As we have the Holy Ghost with us, then we know more about who Christ is and in THAT WAY the Holy Ghost bears record unto him of the Father.

The phrase “for the Father, and I, and the Holy Ghost are one” emphasizes the importance of this and relates it to the intercessory prayer in John 17.

John 17:21 That they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us: that the world may believe that thou hast sent me.
 22 And the glory which thou gavest me I have given them; that they may be one, even as we are one:
 23 I in them, and thou in me, that they may be made perfect in one; and that the world may know that thou hast sent me, and hast loved them, as thou hast loved me.

The Lectures on Faith discusses the meaning of these verses.

[Christ] had said, in another part of his prayer, that he desired of his Father, that those who believed on him should be one in him, as he, and the Father were one in each other: Neither pray I for these (the apostles) alone, but for them also who shall believe on me through their words; that they all may be one: that is, they who believe on him through the apostles’ words, as well as the apostles themselves: that they all may be one, as thou, Father, art in me and I in thee: that they also may be one in us.

What language can be plainer than this? The Savior surely intended to be understood by his disciples: and he so spake that they might understand him; for he declares to his Father, in language not to be easily mistaken, that he wanted his disciples, even all of them, to be as himself and the Father: for as he and the Father were one, so they might be one with them. And what is said in the 22nd verse is calculated to more firmly establish this belief, if it needs any thing to establish it. He says, And the glory which thou gavest me, I have given them, that they may be one, even as we are one. As much as to say, that unless they have the glory which the Father had given him, they could not be one with them: For he says he had given them the glory that the Father had given him, that they might be one; or in other words, to make them one.

There has been an increasing trend by regular members to omit the role of the Holy Ghost in the gospel, by expanding the Savior’s role to encompass the Holy Ghost’s role of writing God’s law in our hearts, which has made some of these scriptures harder to read than they are. The scriptures are always harder to read than they are when we take up some tradition from nowhere and try to cram the scriptures into it. Here are but a couple of many verses teaching of the unique role that the Holy Ghost has that neither the Father nor the Son can assume.

D&C 131:22 The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us.

Thus, we cannot have Christ to be with us, or the Father to be with us. But we can have the Holy Ghost to be with us.

The preceding verses teach

3 Nephi 11:35 Verily, verily, I say unto you, that this is my doctrine, and I bear record of it from the Father; and whoso believeth in me believeth in the Father also; and unto him will the Father bear record of me, for he will visit him with fire and with the Holy Ghost.
36 And thus will the Father bear record of me, and the Holy Ghost will bear record unto him of the Father and me; for the Father, and I, and the Holy Ghost are one.

That is, the whole method of making us one with the Father and the Son is for the Holy Ghost to “bear record” of them. This isn’t bearing record in the sense of “stating that they exist”, this is bearing record in the sense of “teaching us WHO they are and giving us the light and knowledge to be that kind of being”. These verses should be put with

Moroni 7:48 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, pray unto the Father with all the energy of heart, that ye may be filled with this love, which he hath bestowed upon all who are true followers of his Son, Jesus Christ; that ye may become the sons of God; that when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is; that we may have this hope; that we may be purified even as he is pure. Amen.

The point here is that we are changed by receiving the Holy Ghost. We are filled with the gift of Christ’s love as we are filled with the Holy Ghost.

So indeed, blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled with the Holy Ghost.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s