How can Lehi who has suffered so much in the wilderness journey, including the murderous rejection of his own sons, Laman and Lemuel, possibly write that man is that he might have joy? Does he know something that we sometimes forget? We’ll find out as we study together.


Welcome to Meridian Magazine’s Come Follow Me podcast. We’re Scot and Maurine Proctor and today we’ll be studying a lesson on 2 Nephi 1-2 called “Free to Choose Liberty and Eternal Life, through the Great Mediator”.  Transcripts for this podcast can be found at If you are not reading Meridian Magazine every day, you are missing out on a daily feast of inspiration, news and insights from scores of readers. We publish 260 issues a year of Meridian Magazine and 52 podcasts, and we’d love to have you join us. We feel so close to all of you and think it is an honor and pleasure to support each other in our scripture journey.


Scot, once I was commissioned to write a series of films on the Book of Mormon, and as I was planning them, the Spirit kept nagging me that I was missing something really important. Then, one day as I was searching these very chapters that we are studying today, I saw what it was. I had not focused on the importance of the covenant, and therefore had missed something central to my understanding of the Book of Mormon.

Of course, we know from the title page of the Book of Mormon that one of its purposes is that the remnant of the House of Israel “may know the covenants of the Lord” and that though this little branch of the covenant people have now come to a far away place, “they are not cast off forever.” Being part of the covenant is central to their identity, their relationship to God, their sense of security and their story.  They trust that as the Lord says in Psalm 105:8, “He hath remembered his covenant for ever, the word which he commanded to a thousand generations,” which means, of course, longer than forever.

Yet, I see covenant stories and moments in the Book of Mormon pass us by in Sunday Schools as if this central purpose of the scripture is invisible.

Lehi exults that he has obtained “a land of promise, which is choice above all other lands.” It will be for them a land of prosperity and liberty, where they will never be brought into captivity—but it comes with a warning.

To understand just how grave and sober this warning is we must see a larger picture and understand the nature of this covenant as it extends back to the earliest times. This is essential understanding for those of us living in a time when our nation is, in fact, “dwindling in unbelief” and willfully turning its back on the God of this land, which we are told, at our peril, not to do “after we “have received so great blessings from the hand of the Lord” (2 Nephi 1:5,10).


A warning voice from the Lord is not to be neglected. If we are tempted to, the Book of Mormon is designed by its very structure to awaken us, knocking us from a dead sleep.

We are to notice, after all, that this is the story of not one, but two civilizations that obtain a Promised Land through covenant with the Lord, and both refuse to heed the warning. This is the story of two civilizations that are decimated when they had been given every gift.

The Lord is making very clear that he wants us to “get it” by telling the story twice.

So let’s start by looking at what Lehi says when they have arrived to the Promised Land. First, he says, “For behold…I have seen a vision, in which I know that Jerusalem is destroyed; and had we remained in Jerusalem we should also have perished” (2 Nephi 1:4) Remember, Jerusalem was sacked in 587 or 586 BC. Then immediately he rejoices, “But, said he, notwithstanding our afflictions, we have obtained a land of promise, a land which is choice above all other lands; a land which the Lord God hath covenanted with me should be a land for the inheritance of my seed. Yea, the Lord hath covenanted this land unto me, and to my children forever, and also all those who should be led out of other countries by the hand of the Lord” (2 Nephi 1:5).

This is an interesting phrase “a land which the Lord God hath covenanted with me.”

Let’s back up a bit and talk more about the nature of the covenant.


We talk about the Old Testament and the New Testament, but in reality the word testamentum in Latin means covenant. It has the meaning of an inheritance and a witness. So the Old Testament is actually the Old Covenant and the New Testament is the New Covenant.  The purpose of the Book of Mormon from the Title Page “is to show unto the remnant of the house of Israel what great things the Lord hath done for their fathers, and that they may know the covenants of the Lord.” Of course, the word covenant is in the very title of the Doctrine and Covenants. So we understand what this very central theme of the scriptures is. It is teaching about the covenant, its nature, its promises, what happens when it is kept, what happens when it is broken. Sacred history is about the covenant. It is the very tool for opening and understanding the scriptures more deeply. And the covenant can only be made because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ.

People ask us all the time how they can understand scripture better. See it through the lens of the covenant.


Who is God? He has many attributes, but foremost, he is a covenant maker because that is the means, powered by the atonement, of saving his children from a fallen world and from their own fallen natures (which when you get down to it is what hurts us the most.)

A covenant is a legal agreement. It is a contract. It is a will that says you will be “joint heirs” with Christ, which means ultimately you inherit His nature. It is security for us on earth. God sets the terms, but most of the performance is on His part. The atonement, the gift of the Holy Ghost, the guidance, the support, the patience with us when we falter, the strength He lends us every day.


He asks us to do very little for Him to do his work, but give a “”broken heart and a contrite spirit”. Our place in keeping our covenant is a desire, a willingness, a seeking to obey. It is not that we can give perfection right now. The Lord understands the difficulty of our journey in mortality, and, unless we willfully rebel against our covenants, He works long and patiently with us.

He tells us that His gifts and covenants “are given for the benefit of those who love me and keep all my commandments, and him that seeketh so to do” (Doctrine and Covenants 46:9).


Oh, I love that “seeketh so to do” phrase in that verse.  That certainly gives me hope. So what are the covenant blessings?

Emily Belle Freeman described it this way:

  • I am with you.
  • I will keep you safe.
  • I will bring you home again.
  • I will not leave you.
  • I will keep my promise to you.

We like to think of them as six ‘P’s’ so that it is easy to remember. You can particularly see these when God gives the covenant to Abraham.

The first “p” is protection. His covenant people are protected as a nation if they will keep the commandments. You see so many stories illustrating this in the Old Testament. Syria is warring against Israel, the northern kingdom, and they far outnumber the Israelites. When the city was “compassed” all about by a great enemy host, the servant of the man of God was risen early, saw the terrifying sight and said to the prophet Elisha, “Alas, my master, How shall we do? And Elisha prayed, and said, Lord, I pray thee, open his eyes that he may see.” When his eyes were opened he saw a mountain full of heavenly horses and chariots and fire round about Elisha. That’s how the Lord protects His faithful, covenant children. (See 2 Kings 6:14-17)


The next “p” of the covenant is posterity, whose importance is clear in scripture. You see the great concern of the Book of Mormon prophets for what will happen to their posterity.

The next “p” is priesthood. The covenant is administered and maintained by the priesthood power of God. Any other power will ultimately falter.

The fourth “p” is prosperity. This does not necessarily mean material prosperity, but is instead the sense that the Lord will prosper your way with His presence. That is why Nephi could say with such confidence when asked to do hard things, “I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandment unto the children of men save He shall prepare a way for them” (1Nephi 3:10). That preparing a way through His Spirit is prospering.


The fifth ‘p’ is Presence. The end of the covenant journey is to be brought into the Lord’s presence. That means that He has schooled us and groomed us and pruned us to inherit eternal life.

John Taylor said, “Through the world’s great Architect, their Father, they discovered a plan fraught with intelligence and wisdom, reaching from eternity to eternity, pointing out a means whereby, through obedience to celestial laws, they might obtain the same power that he had. And if, in fallen humanity, they might have to suffer for a while, they saw a way back to God, to eternal exaltations, and to the multiplied and eternally increasing happiness of innumerable millions of beings. And if, as Jesus, they had to descend below all things, it was that they might be raised above all things, and take their positions as sons [and daughters] of God in the eternal world.

That’s the ‘p’ of presence. A joint heir of Christ because we have His nature.


So the covenant includes protection, posterity, priesthood power, prosperity and God’s presence. The one we have left out, the sixth ‘p’ is Promised Land. Abraham was promised it. Moses was promised it. And we see in these first verses of 2 Nephi that Lehi obtains a promised land. He understands this is a covenant blessing. It is this covenant awareness that ties the Book of Mormon to the Old Testament and the place from which Lehi and his family came.

What is so important about this gift is it means to have a place. We find this idea when we say, “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth” (Matt. 5:5) or when Christ says, “I go to prepare a place for you” (John 14:2). Is there a sadder word in the language than homeless, or a sadder people than a refugee who have no place?


The Sheik of the desert (which Lehi was) will say to those he takes into his tent:  “Ah Lan Wa Sahlan wa Marhaban” which means “a family, a smooth place, a wide place—you have place with us.” That’s essentially what Lehi would have said to Zoram as they took him in. It is a covenant phrase.

Lehi says: Wherefore, this land is consecrated unto him whom he shall bring. And if it so be that they shall serve him according to the commandments which he hath given, it shall be a land of liberty unto them; wherefore, they shall never be brought down into captivity.”

Then he spells out what those blessings look like:

bInasmuch as those whom the Lord God shall bring out of the land of Jerusalem shall keep his commandments, they shall cprosper upon the face of this land; and they shall be kept from all other nations, that they may possess this land unto themselves. And if it so be that they shall dkeep his commandments they shall be blessed upon the face of this land, and there shall be none to molest them, nor to take away the land of their einheritance; and they shall dwell safely forever”

Because this is a land for a covenant people, as long as they keep the commandments, they shall prosper and be kept from harm by any who would molest them.


When the Children of Israel were about to enter their Promised Land in Canaan, after their wanderings with Moses in the desert, half of tribes were told to go to Mount Gerazim to shout the covenant blessings that were coming to them in their Promised Land. What a scene that must have been. God clearly knows how to imprint on His people memories that will last for generations.

Raising their voices they acclaimed,

“Blessed shalt thou be in the city, and blessed shalt thou be in the field.

“Blessed shall be the fruit of thy body, and the fruit of thy ground, and the fruit of thy cattle, the increase of thy kine, and the flocks of thy sheep.

“Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store

“Blessed shalt thou be when thou comest in, and blessed shalt thou be when thou goest out.

“The Lord shall cause thine enemies that rise up against thee to be smitten before thy face: they shall come out against thee one way, and flee before thee seven ways” (Deut. 28: 3-7).


So every part of their lives were prospered. These same blessings are clearly on Lehi’s Land of Promise. It is the same covenant, after all.

Bless them, God did, including truly spectacular stories of protection when they were beset by enemies. When the cruelest most savage army on earth that struck fear into every living soul, the Assyrians, came against them during the reign of Hezekiah, it appeared grim. The Assyrian leader Ashurbanipol had boasted of an earlier conquest, “I burned three thousand captives with fire. I left not a single one among them,” and taunted the Israelites’ God as weak and unable to save them.

The Lord answered, “He shall not come into this city, nor shoot an arrow there…For I will defend this city, to save it, for mine own sake” (2 Kings 19:32,34). And He did. In the morning when the Israelites awoke, 185,000 Assyrians were dead.

As long as Israel was righteous, the Promised Land was a haven of abundance and a land of liberty.


It is clear there are covenant blessings, astounding blessings. We call them Baraka. Baraka means covenant power, efficacy and blessing. In Egypt they have a brand of water called Baraka, and what could be a greater relief in the desert than water?

Yet, these covenant blessings are conditional on our keeping our part of the promise.  We must obey the commandments. What happens when we don’t, when we are willfully rebellious? It is called a covenant cursing and the word for that is ‘gelalah.’

You like to say that, don’t you Scot? There is a kind of ring to it.


Yes, gelalah!

God has his hand over His Promised Land and His covenant people, but if—and this is a monumentally critical “but if”—they turn from Him that promise is blasted and withdrawn. When half of the Children of Israel were shouting the covenant blessings upon the Promised Land, the other half of the tribes went to the top of Mount Ebal to shout what the curses would be to those who willfully rebelled against God (See Deuteronomy 28).

Those who turned their faces to the pagan gods of the land and wallowed in every kind of immorality would see their precious land and prospects cursed, including the curse of falling to their enemies.

We know, of course, that this is just what happened. Solomon’s temple, called the first temple, was destroyed by the Babylonians in 587 BC and the people carried off to a foreign land, where, by the waters of Babylon, they wept for their burned and ravaged Zion.

The second temple, which was engineered by Ezra and Nehemiah and then entirely redone by Herod was burned by Rome in 70 AD. The temple mount was left as fit only to be plowed.


The destruction of both of these temples was taken as a clear sign by the Jews that God had withdrawn from them. What’s remarkable is each of them had the same date of destruction on the Jewish calendar–the 9th of Av. Many take this to mean the Lord’s hand is in it.

No matter how fierce their enemies would have been, no matter how powerful their horses and chariots, the Children of Israel would have been protected in the covenant, if they had not turned their backs on it.

So here is the covenant cursing or we might call it the consequence for willfully breaking the covenant. It is a warning upon the promised land.

10 But behold, when the time cometh that they shall dwindle in aunbelief, after they have received so great blessings from the hand of the Lord—having a knowledge of the creation of the earth, and all men, knowing the great and marvelous works of the Lord from the creation of the world; having power given them to do all things by faith; having all the commandments from the beginning, and having been brought by his infinite goodness into this precious land of promise—behold, I say, if the day shall come that they will reject the Holy One of Israel, the true bMessiah, their Redeemer and their God, behold, the judgments of him that is cjust shall rest upon them. (2 Nephi 1:7, 9 and 10).


The covenant is conditional upon obedience. This doesn’t mean that if we work with all our heart to keep our covenants, but are flawed human beings, repenting and trying again, that we are breaking our covenants. Breaking the covenant is about willful rebellion—and then consequences follow. It is because the Lord then withdraws His Spirit, and people are left to the ravages and buffetings of Satan.

Without the Spirit, they lose truth and light and become confused. Their minds are a tangle of bad ideas and corrupted longings. They turn to false solutions and false worship. They worship themselves, they hate each other, they foment division. The covenant curse is that they are darkened and all impulses come from a place of continual longing and running after that which will never satisfy.

To make this point clear, when the Children of Israel that Moses led out of Egypt came into the Promised Land, six tribes stood on Mount Gerizim and six on neighboring Mount Ebal. Those who stood on Mount Gerizim were to call out the covenant blessings and those on Mount Ebal the series of curses that would follow disobedience.


The blessings, as all covenant blessings are, were powerful. Blessed you’ll be in the city and the field. Blessed the fruit of your body and the flocks of thy sheep. Blessed shall be thy basket and thy store.

It goes on and on. The blessings that we are most in need of to have a secure and happy mortal experience.


But these promises would slip away and be revoked if the people became rebellious and worshipped other gods.

As we know, “I, the Lord, am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise (D&C 82:10).”

This covenant on the Promised Land is mentioned constantly in the Book of Mormon. Someone has calculated 38 times. You can’t miss this theme. More than that, it also let’s us see the why of what happens in this book more clearly. The Nephite nation is decimated, because they utterly turned from the covenant, but if that is not enough to demonstrate what happens when a people turn from the Lord, we get the story twice. We also learn of the Jaredites, who turned from their covenants and were also destroyed.


Chris Stewart and Ted Stewart wrote in Seven Miracles that Saved America this little-known event about Abraham Lincoln.

“During the civil war, the Union and Confederate armies fought a Battle at Gettysburg. Gettysburg was arguably the most important battle of the Civil War. Here’s a story that tells of the trust President Lincoln had in God to win that war:


“On July 1st, the first shot at Gettysburg was fired. A million other shots soon fired as, over the next 3 days, one of the most momentous battles in history of the world unfolded upon the green fields of southern Pennsylvania.


“Who was winning? No one could really tell. Could the Union hold the high ground? The first day it seemed unlikely. The second day it seemed impossible.


“How many soldiers had the Union army lost?


“Thousands lay upon the ground. Had Lee ordered Longstreet to attack the Union’s 3rd Corps on the left flank? Reports were sparse and faulty. No one really knew what was going on.


“Amazingly throughout the battle, Abraham Lincoln remained unexplainably calm.”




“During the entire episode at Gettysburg, while his Union army faced the possibility of a final and crushing defeat, he was described as being in excellent spirits. Only later did Lincoln confide why he was possessed of such calm.


“One of the wounded of the battle was General Daniel Sickles, a man whose injury led to his leg being amputated. Shortly after the battle, he was moved to a house in Washington where he was visited by his President. During the conversation, Sickles asked about the level of concern in the capital when Lee’s army was approaching. The President acknowledged that matters had been taken to evacuate the city. But that he personally had remained confident of the battle’s outcome. When asked why, the President related:


“’When Lee crossed the Potomac and entered Pennsylvania, followed by our Army, I felt that the great crisis had come. I knew that defeat in a great battle on northern soil involved the loss of Washington, to be followed perhaps by the intervention of England and France in favor of the Confederacy. I went to my room and got down on my knees in prayer.


“’Never before had I prayed with so much earnestness. I wish I could repeat my prayer. I felt I must put all my trust in Almighty God. He gave our people the best country ever given to man. He alone could save it from destruction. I had tried my best to do my duty and found myself unequal to the task. The burden was more than I could bear. I asked him to help us and give us victory now. I was sure my prayer was answered. I had no misgivings about the result at Gettysburg.’




“This discussion was observed by General James Rusling, who gave the following account of the conversation:

“In reply to a question from General Sickles whether or not the President was anxious about the battle at Gettysburg, Lincoln gravely said ‘No, I was not. Some of my cabinet and many others in Washington were, but I had no fear.’ General Sickles inquired how this was and seemed curious about it. Mr. Lincoln hesitated, but finally replied,


“’Well, I will tell you how it was. In the pinch of the campaign up there when everybody seemed panic-stricken, and nobody could tell what was going to happen, oppressed by the gravity of our affairs, I went to my room one day and I locked the door and got down on my knees before Almighty God and prayed to him mightily for victory at Gettysburg. I told him that this was His war, and our cause his cause, but we couldn’t stand another Fredericksburg or Chancellorville and I then and there made a solemn vow to Almighty God that if he would stand by our boys at Gettysburg, I would stand by Him.’”




Abraham Lincoln said, “’And He did stand by your boys, and I will stand by Him. And after that (I don’t know how it was and can’t explain it) soon a sweet comfort crept into my soul that God Almighty had taken the whole business into his own hands, and that things would go alright at Gettysburg, and that it why I had no fears upon you.’”


With a battle raging, of which so much depended upon, Abraham Lincoln was calm and assured of the outcome, due to his trust in the Lord. Think of how much was at stake if the Union had lost that battle and lost the war?


We may not be in a literal war or even be in the military, but our own personal trials can rage similar to a war. Can we have the calm and peace that is needed to ask unto the Lord for his help so that we can weather the storm?


What if there had been no Abraham Lincoln? What if he hadn’t had such faith as to declare the Emancipation Proclamation? What if he hadn’t had faith to go to God in prayer asking for victory at the Battle of Gettysburg? What if a lesser man had occupied the White House from 1861-1865?

  1. Who knows how long Slavery would have continued.
  2. Perhaps the constitution would have been dismissed as a failed experiment.
  3. Our country would have been divided and perhaps hostility would have remained (Lincoln was essential to repairing relationships between the two sides after the war)
  4. Our country may have looked drastically different.

All of this was at stake and yet Abraham Lincoln was perfectly calm during the battle.


The Book of Mormon has been called a witness and a warning. The witness, of course, is of the Divinity and the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The warning is of prophets who passionately plead with us not to turn our backs on God and His covenants.

The Book of Mormon insists that the calamities and warnings it describes are for our day. Moroni is frank, “Jesus Christ hath shown you unto me, and I know your doing” (Mormon 8:35).

It might be jarring to think that a prophet who has seen our day delivers a book to us that doesn’t just give us sweet platitudes about the importance of being good, but also spells with such muscle the tactics and smooth talk of Satan as he woos a covenant people from then Lord.


Knowing all this, Lehi pleads with Laman and Lemuel: O that ye would awake; awake from a deep asleep, yea, even from the sleep of bhell, and shake off the awful cchains by which ye are bound, which are the chains which bind the children of men, that they are carried away captive down to the eternal dgulf of misery and woe” (2 Nephi 1:13).

“Chains” and “deep sleep” are very powerful images depicting what Satan does to those who had been promised so much.


Now, Lehi, of course, is nearing the end of his life, and will give blessings to his worthy sons. In his first words to Jacob, Lehi reveals another covenant promise. Acknowledging that Jacob has had a rough time, especially because of the “rudeness” of his brothers, Lehi said, the Lord “shall consecrate thine afflictions for thy gain” (2 Nephi 2:2) What a critical piece of knowledge this is. Sometimes it seems that our suffering is random on this earth, and many think that life itself is suffering. This covenant assurance is that the suffering we face has a purpose. It is for our development and growth and goodness. Understanding the purpose for suffering and opposition– and turning to the Lord for comfort, can utterly transform our afflictions.


President Dallin H. Oaks said, “The Apostle Paul taught that the Lord’s teachings and teachers were given that we may all attain ‘the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ’ (Eph. 4:13). This process requires far more than acquiring knowledge. It is not even enough for us to be convinced of the gospel; we must act and think so that we are converted by it. In contrast to the institutions of the world, which teach us to know something, the gospel of Jesus Christ challenges us to become something…

“Other scriptures enlarge upon this by referring to our being judged by the condition we have achieved.”


Sometimes I think we imagine that we will stand before the judgment bar and roll out a list of the things we have achieved, a sort of resumé of earth, our busy task list. That won’t be necessary, for the Lord will look at what we are and who we have become. Our being will be transparent, strong, solid and clear before Him.

President Oaks said, “A parable illustrates this understanding. A wealthy father knew that if he were to bestow his wealth upon a child who had not yet developed the needed wisdom and stature, the inheritance would probably be wasted. The father said to his child:

“All that I have I desire to give you—not only my wealth, but also my position and standing among men. That which I have I can easily give you, but that which I am you must obtain for yourself. You will qualify for your inheritance by learning what I have learned and by living as I have lived.’”(President Dallin H. Oaks, “The Challenge to Become”)


Lehi’s blessing to Jacob is a reflection of the man. Jacob had both seen the Lord and had great affliction. Thus Lehi tells the creation story to him, in a different way than it is expressed in Genesis or Abraham. Here the emphasis is on the need for choice in the face of opposition, painting a vivid picture of our mortal experience

Lehi explains, “It must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so, … righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good nor bad” (2 Nephi 2:11; see also verse 15).


Lehi continued, “the Lord God gave unto man that he should act for himself. Wherefore, man could not act for himself save it should be that he was enticed by the one or the other” (verse 16).


Because of opposition, men and women would be placed in the way of constant choice, and with each choice they were choosing who they were, in fact building who they were. Moment by moment, before all of the choices of life and in the face of extenuating circumstances, we choose courage or cowardice, love or the bitter ashes of resentment, obedience or apathy, devotion to Christ or today’s popular opinion, discipline over appetite.

These aren’t just random choices, one accumulated on another build ones very soul. Because the opposition is so real, the enticements so compelling, there is a grounding power that comes from good choice in the face of real opposition.

It reminds me of a sculpture we saw once by Gary Price. It was a self-portrait of the sculpture, sculpting himself, choosing what he was stroke for stroke and chisel line by line.


Opposition was there from the beginning.

“And to bring about his eternal purposes,” in the Garden of Eden, “there was an opposition; even the forbidden fruit in opposition to the tree of life; the one being sweet and the other bitter.”(2 Nephi 2:15).

President Oaks said, “If Adam and Eve had not made the choice that introduced mortality, Lehi taught, “they would have remained in a state of innocence, … doing no good, for they knew no sin” (2 Nephi 2:23).

“From the beginning, agency and opposition were central to the Father’s plan and to Satan’s rebellion against it. As the Lord revealed to Moses, in the council of heaven, Satan ‘sought to destroy the agency of man’ (Moses 4:3). That destruction was inherent in the terms of Satan’s offer. He came before the Father and said, “Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor” (Moses 4:1).


President Oaks continued, “Thus, Satan proposed to carry out the Father’s plan in a way that would prevent the accomplishment of the Father’s purpose and give Satan His glory.

“Satan’s proposal would have ensured perfect equality: it would ‘redeem all mankind,’ that not one soul would be lost. There would be no agency or choice by anyone and, therefore, no need for opposition. There would be no test, no failure, and no success. There would be no growth to attain the purpose the Father desired for His children.”

“All of us experience various kinds of opposition that test us. Some of these tests are temptations to sin. Some are mortal challenges apart from personal sin. Some are very great. Some are minor. Some are continuous, and some are mere episodes. None of us is exempt. Opposition permits us to grow toward what our Heavenly Father would have us become.” (President Dallin H. Oaks, “Opposition in All Things.”)

Our development demands a tough road, for the Lord isn’t making party guests of us, but Sons and Daughters, who have become like Him, through a process He has designed.


Think about a world without law. There really would be no goodness or evil. There would be no standard to appeal to to interpret what was right or wrong. All would be chaos, and what happens in chaos? Somebody’s will finally prevails. It is often the strongest or the most ruthless or the tyrant who has a will to power.

We can see that in our secular world that has given up any sense of truth or eternal law. The highest standard we can come up with is moral relativism or as so many put it “you do you.” When there is not a sense of right or wrong, any terrible thing goes.


Though this experience on earth would teach us competence and character, and though our choices are of paramount importance, ultimately “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” (2 Nephi 2:8).  Our time on earth is prolonged and is a probation, so that we may repent and take this glorious gift. “Adam fell that men might be; and men are that they might have joy (2 Nephi 2:25).

Experiencing the sweet and the bitter was necessary, and the joy, even through the opposition, is real because we have a Savior.


We love you listeners. You are dear to us. We think about you all the time when we are preparing these podcasts. Thanks for so many of you who reach out to us. Tell a friend about these podcasts, with a new one every Friday. Thanks to Paul Cardall for the music and to Michaela Proctor Hutchins for our producer. We’ll see you next week