Traditions aren’t as easy to break free from when you don’t know that they are there. Once you know that they exist, the escape route is hard to find, because you honestly can’t tell what is true or what is tradition. The way to get through to the heavens, without being dependent upon the arm of flesh, is to study the scriptures By The Same Spirit that they were written in.
Trap of Tradition: Traditions aren’t as easy to break free from when you don’t know that they even exist.This was a huge breakthrough for me, as I have been taught practically all my childhood life to follow the leader, conform to the institution, and don’t step outta-line. The teaching was a subtle corporate teaching, and began in primary, singing, “Do as I’m Doing, Follow, Follow Me.” We moved from clapping our hands, to patting our heads, to repetitive testimony-bearing, to haircuts and acceptable church dress attire, to seminary “scripture mastery,” to serving missions using memorized catch-phrases, …finally, into becoming “The Leader.” From primary we were conditioned to beg to be the leader, …but as an adult, you actually had the sustaining vote of hundreds of members, to confirm you as the leader. As the leader, you encourage singing “Follow the Prophet,” because your position as a ward or stake leader only exists through the sustaining of the Prophet, and to debunk a Prophet’s authority is to remove all power in your own authority. And now we are in a pickle, aren’t we? The scriptures contradict this thinking, saying, don’t trust in the arm of flesh, don’t make the arm of flesh your arm, so we make the justification that when a prophet speaks, it’s as if God is speaking, therefore trusting in a Prophet isn’t trusting in the arm of flesh, …so “…Follow the Prophet, he holds all the keys.” This is what is meant by being left to kick against the pricks and fight against the saints (D&C 121). Traditions are so well hidden, until something opens your eyes to see it, you could go your entire life not recognizing that someone lied to you!
Escape Route: However, once you know that these false traditions exist in you, the escape route is still hard to find. Depending on how old you are when you discovered these false traditions, you may have built your entire life, centered on those traditions, amassing your wealth upon it’s principles, accumulating treasures in the earth, raising your children, grand children, and great grand children the same way, …thus, making uncovering greater truths, contradicting your successful traditions, seem embarrassing, destructive, and impossible!!! In this condition of in-between, you honestly can’t tell what is true or what is tradition. Even scripture study is painted with the brush strokes of an institution, such that you cannot seem to see any other way to interpret them, other than the way the institution has drilled it into you. In this case, the advantage goes to the children. Children haven’t been deeply rooted in the ideas of the world, making it easier for them to change from deeply rooted traditions because they aren’t so deeply rooted. But change to what???
Christ’s atonement is the only Escape Route! When you finally wake up to the awful situation by which you are bound, …then you will realize that Christ is the only one you can trust to know what to change into and how to make the change. The Lord said you must become precisely what He is; you must be Christ. Lectures on Faith teaches that Christ is the prototype of a saved being. Scriptures teach that when you see Christ, you will know Him, because you will be like Him. He performed the atonement, so He understands who you are and the difficulties you face, …because He has overcome them all. Thus, His role as savior is to do the saving. And He hires no one for that job (2 Nephi 9:41). But, you must first believe in Him.
When you begin to believe in Christ’s ability to repair you, that is when you start believing in the atonement, and can begin your journey with Him because He is the only one who atoned. The journey takes time. It starts slow, but gains momentum, and produces in abundance! A summary of what you will be progressing through is found in the seven beatitudes, presented in order:
- Poor in Spirit
- Hunger & Thirst after Righteousness
- Pure in Heart
- Peace Makers.
I’ll not go through them here, but each step is accumulative, so you never check it off! Instead, you get added unto. When you have endured through one step, naturally, you will be introduced to the next step, …which will introduce new challenges in both the next step and the first combined. By the time you have accomplished the seventh step (Peacemaker), no one will need to tell you how Poor in Spirit you really are, because you already know!
Philosophers, scholars and church authorities will try to convince you that they know the answer for your life. Those awake to the awful situation will quickly realize that they all sound like confusion, static, and noise. Every man is exactly what the scriptures have identified as “the arm of flesh.” Then how the hell are we supposed to begin the journey if we can’t trust men in the flesh? Aren’t prophets supposed to be trusted to tell the truth? Aren’t they men in the flesh? NO, we don’t trust prophets, we hearken to them, and then we trust The Spirit to teach us the truth of all things. We never trust in the arm of flesh. We seek The Spirit of God!
The Spirit Leads: The way to get through to the heavens, without being dependent upon the arm of flesh, is to study the scriptures By The Same Spirit that they were written in. Right away, you must develop the skill of receiving revelation. It is revelation that is supposed to grow in you. Anyone can read the scriptures, and many have, without the Spirit of Revelation. Reading this way will not produce the promised results. Church authority, academia, ancient literature, languages, and credentials cannot understand the scriptures without The Same Spirit that animated the author who wrote it. They have no advantage over the Poor in Spirit, the farm boy, the child, and the unlearned. The opposite is true, those who are Poor in Spirit, a humble farm boy, a meek child, and a mourning unlearned man has far greater advantage to know the scriptures By The Same Spirit.
The world would teach you otherwise. But, when was the last time you took a college course producing an ascension? When have you been taught by your clergy priesthood authority how to see the Lord face to face in the flesh? When did academic achievement in literature, languages, and worldly credentials produce your calling and election sure? On the other hand, Abraham was Poor in Spirit. Joseph who was sold into Egypt was too. Joseph Smith had the heavens opened to him. None of them trusted in the arm of flesh, but all of them read the words of Christ By The Same Spirit that they were written in, …and each one walked into the presence of Christ in the flesh, was redeemed from the fall, and had the heavens opened and accessible to them. That’s a good place to begin our journey with Christ!
Conclusion: The journey with Christ begins when you realize only He has the power to save you from your state of darkness, ignorance, and death. When you wake up to this, the first step is to pray and study the words of Christ in scripture By The Same Spirit that they were written in. Revelation will grow within you, until you are at-one-with-Christ, being redeemed from the fall, brought back into His presence, and crowned with glory and power.
Begin your journey now while the waters are still gentle, before the floods. Enter the ark before the rains begin falling, and your time for preparation has past. Noah was merciful when he didn’t allow others in the ark. The ark is a covenant. Allowing people in the ark who weren’t prepared required that they take a covenant that they weren’t able to keep. If they entered, and later broke the covenant, not only would they loose their physical life, but they would become perdition, loosing their ETERNAL LIFE.
Accepting a covenant cannot be taken lightly. It requires the preparation of both heart and mind so that you keep the covenant, and benefit from the blessings of it’s protection in the darkness ahead. Work in the scriptures, By The Same Spirit that they were written in, is absolutely necessary before accepting a covenant and entering the ark. Together, many hands make light work, …so lets work together. In Zion, it will be merciful to refuse entry for the same reason as it was merciful for Noah to deny entry into the ark. In the coming times of darkness, Zion will be the only protection.
Men, step up, by providing and protecting. Provide your family with the necessary light in the words of Christ. Offer your family the protection of God, refusing to trust in the arm of flesh! Be filled with The Same Spirit that animated all sons of God, all patriarchal fathers, …precisely the same Spirit that Christ shares with the Father. Be at-one-with-THEM!