This one’s too good to pass up. But it’ll be short.
This morning I was pondering about the difference between prayer and crying unto the Lord. I knew that there was a difference in intensity, but that’s all I could understand. I never quite understood what made the intensity so strong, to differentiate between prayer and crying. I was certain that it wasn’t merely the tears, or the emotion, or the pain. But I couldn’t really put my finger on it, until I contemplated the brother of Jared, and the parallel with the only condition of an acceptable offering.
I thought about the story of the brother of Jared, and his experience with seeing the Lord face-to-face, in the flesh, at least 22,000 years before Christ came in his mortal ministry. (BTW: The date is an approximation of the tower of Babel, where the languages were changed, and around the same time as Abraham). The Savior made an appearance in the flesh, long before his earthly ministry, to comfort the brother of Jared in his greatest offering. And, because the brother of Jared’s offering was nothing short of “everything,” the Lord made his appearance to instruct and comfort the brother of Jared. It wasn’t merely a willingness to give it all, or covenanting to give it all (as we assume in our temple rituals), but the actual giving of it all, that produced the opening of the heaven, and Christ’s compliment of faith never before witnessed, as the brother of Jared.
I found myself thinking of how “ALL ACCEPTABLE SACRIFICES” are only acceptable… (wait for it…) …as they are in the similitude of The Only Begotten Son! And then, a light switched-on in my head, as I remembered Christ’s prayer in the garden of Gethsemane. I realized that crying unto God, on behalf of those who are Christ’s, is likened unto the brother of Jared, crying on behalf of those who were his. BTW: Christ didn’t pray for all, only for those whom the father had given him, who would come unto him. This was the same kind of prayer that Christ prayed on behalf of the Nephites in the American continent, that we call the intercessory prayer: “Father, make them one with me, as I am with thee!”
Conclusion: Consider this concept, as you think about all the people who have had the privilege of a personal visitation of angelic ministers, and the presence of Christ in the flesh, and you’ll probably observe this same pattern, in different scenarios. Their sacrifice was in similitude of Christ’s, and their prayer was on behalf of those who are theirs.
In the first chapter of the Book of Mormon, it was Lehi’s prayer on behalf of his people, that produced the pillar of fire on the rock. In the Book of Enos, Enos sought the welfare of his people as well. Moroni seeks God’s grace on behalf of his people. All of the ancient patriarchs have been given a covenant on behalf of their posterity as well. We benefit from the covenants given to our ancient patriarchal fathers. Thus, as the hearts of the children turn to the covenants made to the fathers, then can man connect to heaven, and that’s when Malachi’s words are properly fulfilled. Otherwise, the whole earth will burn.
That is the the light that clicked for me. When a people have the same faith as the brother of Jared, then heavens will open for them. It is only as a people are one, that they can begin to qualify to be Christ’s. If they are not one, then they are not Christ’s.
In the present time, we face our own towers of Babel. I pray that our family can preserve our language, by knowing the words of Christ. And as we do, we can have a people to pray for, as did the brother of Jared, and we too can be given a land of inheritance. Let us be one!
Malama Pono Ohana!