Why We Ask Questions

Why We Ask Questions
We can ask questions because we can have sure answers

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Wise men still seek Him

Well, usually my main topic comes from the Book of Mormon, because that is what my blog mainly has to do with. While I will still be sharing my message from the Book of Mormon, today it has a different spin because of the Christmas season.

As I have grown up, I have really loved traditions and have been fascinated with how they get started. There are of course the traditions of the tree, the star, candy, stockings, and Santa Clause. These are all wonderful traditions, but my all time favorite tradition was when mom would get a certain book off the book shelf and read it to me and my three siblings. The book was a story from the Book of Mormon and it is the Christmas story on the other side of the world. I'd like to share it with y'all since I have come to love it so much.

This is the story of a people who knew and had faith that the Savior of the world would be born. They were on the other side of the world, but there had been prophecies foretold of his coming. These people believed in those signs and things that the prophets said would happen when Christ was born. however they were outnumbered by many who did not believe, and moreover because they did not believe they would not repent. They did not believe in the Savior or that he would be born, and because they outnumbered the believers, they decided on a certain day that all the believers would be put to the death unless they saw the signs prophesied.

"Now it came to pass that there was a day set apart by the unbelievers, that all those who believed in those traditions should be put to death except the sign should come to pass, which had been given by Samuel the prophet." - 3 Nephi 1:9

These families had heard the sign of Christ's birth being prophesied for years and were waiting for their beloved Savior to come, but as the time passed, those who did not believe began to persecute those who did.

"But there were some who began to say that the time was past for the words to be fulfilled, which were spoken by Samuel, the Lamanite. And they began to rejoice over their brethren, saying: Behold the time is past, and the words of Samuel are not fulfilled; therefore, your joy and your faith concerning this thing hath been vain." - 3 Nephi 1:5-6

So let's just step out of this story for a minute and think. For minute push past the thoughts of how busy you are, how much you have to get done, all the things want to do. Push past the thoughts of how expensive so and so's gift will be, and think about Christmas. Think about when it happened. It was not broadcast on a wide screen TV. It was not trending on Facebook. It was quiet and meek and lowly.
Now picture these families. Picture young children, who have grown up hearing the prophecies that the Christ child will come. Think about the mothers and fathers who knew that if that sign didn't come very soon, they and their families would all be put to death.

What they needed was a miracle. A Christmas miracle to save their lives and the lives of their children. Even though things did not look promising, they had the faith that their Savior was coming.

"And it came to pass that they did make a great uproar throughout the land; and the people who believed began to be very sorrowful, lest by any means those things which had been spoken might not come to pass. But behold, they did watch steadfastly for that day and that night and that day which should be as one day as if there were no night, that they might know that their faith had not been vain."- 3 Nephi 1:7-8

As the day approached that the Savior was supposed to come, the believers watched for the sign, and the unbelievers prepared to put them all to death. Their beloved prophet saw the terrible wickedness and sadness and took his heavy heart to the Lord in prayer and received an answer.

"And it came to pass that he went out and bowed himself down upon the earth, and cried mightily to his God in behalf of his people, yea, those who were about to be destroyed because of their faith in the tradition of their fathers. And it came to pass that he cried mightily unto the Lord all that day; and behold, the voice of the Lord came unto him, saying: Lift up your head and be of good cheer; for behold, the time is at hand, and on this night shall the sign be given, and on the morrow come I into the world, to show unto the world that I will fulfill all that which I have caused to be spoken by the mouth of my holy prophets." - 3 Nephi 1:11-13

The Lord promised that these people did not hope in vain and that He would come into the world that very night. The people waited anxiously for the coming of the sign that they might not perish. They waited for their Christmas miracle and at last it came.

"And it came to pass that the words which came unto Nephi were fulfilled, according as they had been spoken; for behold, at the going down of the sun there was no darkness; and the people began to be astonished because there was no darkness when the night came and there were many, who had not believed the words of the prophets, who fell to the earth and became as if they were dead, for they knew that the great plan of destruction which they had laid for those who believed in the words of the prophets had been frustrated; for the sign which had been given was already at hand. And they began to know that the Son of God must shortly appear; yea, in fine, all the people upon the face of the whole earth from the west to the east, both in the land north and in the land south, were so exceedingly astonished that they fell to the earth.For they knew that the prophets had testified of these things for many years, and that the sign which had been given was already at hand; and they began to fear because of their iniquity and their unbelief.And it came to pass that there was no darkness in all that night, but it was as light as though it was mid-day. And it came to pass that the sun did rise in the morning again, according to its proper order; and they knew that it was the day that the Lord should be born, because of the sign which had been given. And it had come to pass, yea, all things, every whit, according to the words of the prophets .And it came to pass also that a new star did appear, according to the word." - 3 Nephi 1: 15-21

The day came, the sign appeared. Those who had been wicked knew that everything the prophets had said was true. They could not deny the signs that had come to pass. Because of the sign appearing, the families were saved. Their Christmas miracle had come true.

We are not hoping for a sign to come, we are not an inn keeper with no room in the inn. We are each on our own search for the Savior. A quote I have seen around Christmas time states, "Wise men still seek Him." This is so true. Christmas does come just once in a year, but the spirit of Christmas, or the spirit of Christ can be around us all the time. The spirit of Christ comes when we share our love with others, when we give to those in need, when we share the saviors precious gift of the gospel with those who are perishing in unbelief. Christmas is a holiday, but it is also an attitude and a life style. It is how we as weak and imperfect human beings choose to live our lives like the Savior. I testify that we all have the opportunity to live with God again because of the Savior's birth, and this may be the greatest Christmas gift of all. These things I say, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

He is the Gift