What shall be done for us? How could we have fallen so far?
It used to be that it was normal for a good girl to get married in white, showing that she was still a virgin. That was not inside the church. That was among those outside the church. This was such a strong trend that in those days there would be a bit of an uproar if a girl wore white to her wedding who had lost her virtue. Virtue was expected and its loss was no small matter.
Can we really think we are being Christ’s people while believing the atonement means we can live lower today than nonmembers did yesterday?
Do we not remember the words that Jacob spoke to the Nephites. The Nephites despised the Lamanites, whose parents had rejected the truth. But the Lamanites were actually living the law of chastity better than the Nephites were, and so we read.
Jacob 3:5 Behold, the Lamanites your brethren, whom ye hate because of their filthiness and the cursing which hath come upon their skins, are more righteous than you; for ye have not forgotten the commandment of the Lord, which was given unto our father – that they should have save it were one wife, and concubines they should have none, and there should not be whoredoms committed among them.
8 O my brethren, I fear that unless ye shall repent of your sins that their skins will be whiter than yours, when ye shall be brought with them before the throne of God.
What do Jacob’s words say of us when we compare ourselves to the nonmembers of the past? When we live lower than the men and women of the past who were not members of the church, and could not have the gift of the Holy Ghost, and then say it is all fine because of the atonement, do we really believe such rot?
Yes, Christ performed the atonement. No, we are not worthy of better blessings than the nonmembers of the past who lived the law of chastity better than we do. Unless we repent we will find their skins whiter than ours at the judgment bar.
And you find that. We have smiles and optimism and friendship, but they substitute poorly in place of power in the Holy Ghost, faith like a mustard seed, and the revelations of heaven among our membership.