Tuesday, January 03, 2017

Our Heavenly Father

Alma, a Book of Mormon prophet, wrote, “All things denote there is a God; yea, even the earth, and all things that are upon the face of it, yea, and its motion, yea, and also all the planets which move in their regular form do witness that there is a Supreme Creator” (Alma 30:44). We can look up at the sky at night and have an idea of what Alma meant. There are millions of stars and planets, all in perfect order. They did not get there by chance. We can see the work of God in the heavens and on the earth. The many beautiful plants, the many kinds of animals, the mountains, the rivers, the clouds that bring us rain and snow--all these testify to us that there is a God.

Paul explained simply: 4 For every house is builded by some man; but he that built all things is God.

I great cartoon featuring 2 talking snowmen also expresses the absurdity of denying the existence of God.  2 snowmen were discussing where they came from when the first "Don't be absurd, noone made us, we evolved by chance from snowflakes."

The prophets have taught us that God is the Almighty Ruler of the universe. God dwells in heaven (see D&C 20:17). Through His Son, Jesus Christ, He created the heavens and the earth and all things that are in them (see 3 Nephi 9:15; Moses 2:1). He made the moon, the stars, and the sun. He organized this world and gave it form, motion, and life. He filled the air and the water with living things. He covered the hills and plains with all kinds of animal life. He gave us day and night, summer and winter, seedtime and harvest. He made man in His own image to be a ruler over His other creations (see Genesis 1:26–27).

The beauty of creation is a great testimony to the love of our heavenly father.  whenever I watch Star Wars movies I'm reminded somewhat of this.  instead of living on the earth with its temperature climate, had god not been so loving we could've been stuck on some icy snowball of a planet like Hoth, some volcanic planet like Mustafar, or some godforsaken desert planet like Jaiku or Tatooine.  

God is the Supreme and Absolute Being in whom we believe and whom we worship. He is “the Great Parent of the universe,” and He “looks upon the whole of the human family with a fatherly care and paternal regard” (Teachings of Presidents of the Church: Joseph Smith [2007], 39).

We may take it for granted that we believe and know that God is a God of love.  In Greek and Roman times, The people generally believed in a pantheon of gods who disagreed on just about everything and watched humans fight and die on the battlefield for entertainment. you may think this doesn't matter much to tell you remember that this led to the masses being entertained by savage gladiators who fought to the death in the Colosseums.   Contrast this to Enoch who witnessed God weep after being shown the wickedness and resultant suffering of the people of the Earth.  Enoch was blown away at God's reaction.  God cared deeply for His children and suffered at our suffering. 

Pearl of Great Price, Moses 7:29 And Enoch said unto the Lord: How is it that thou canst weep, seeing thou art holy, and from all eternity to all eternity?

Some people may think of God as all justice and no mercy.  They may think Heavenly Gather is the one that cannot look upon sin with the lease degree of allowance while Jesus Christ is the merciful one.  but this is to forget that Jesus did nothing on His own but only that which He saw the father do, and only that which he was specifically directed by the Father to do.  so we shouldn't forget that it's heavenly father who is just as perfectly merciful as he is just. The plan are redemption in the atonement of Jesus Christ were entirely Heavenly Father's idea. Again, even though Jesus Christ effected the creation, atonement and resurrection, all these were Heavenly Father's ideas.

The Nature of God

The creation story in Genesis in the Bible tells us unmistakably that we are created in the image of God.  Because we are made in His image (see Moses 2:26; 6:9), we know that our bodies are like His body. His eternal spirit is housed in a tangible body of flesh and bones (see D&C 130:22). God’s body, however, is perfected and glorified, with a glory beyond all description.

D&C 130:22 The Father has a body of flesh and bones as tangible as man’s; the Son also; but the Holy Ghost has not a body of flesh and bones, but is a personage of Spirit. Were it not so, the Holy Ghost could not dwell in us.

God is perfect. He is a God of righteousness, with attributes such as love, mercy, charity, truth, power, faith, knowledge, and judgment. He has all power. He knows all things. He is full of goodness.  All good things come from God. Everything that He does is to help His children become like Him. He has said, “Behold, this is my work and my glory--to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39).

I'm not sure why our doctrine of God working to have His children become more like Him is so controversial.  This has nothing to do with Oedipus-like complex and taking God's place.  This has nothing to do with too many chiefs and no Indians.  The scriptures describe God as a King of kings and a Lord of lords.  When you compliment a doctor, you say they are the doctor's doctor. In a similar way, the exaltation of God's children brings honor and glory to our Father.  Our Heavenly Father desires to be the Father over other exalted beings like Himself who continue to serve and reverence Him and not just a smack of jelly fish. 

Why is it important for us to understand the nature of God and How can we come to know God?   

Knowing God is so important that the Savior said, “This is life eternal, that they might know thee the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom thou hast sent” (John 17:3).

John 1:4-5 In him was life; and the life was the light of men.  And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.

the Wicked and natural man cannot comprehend and understand God.  Gods thoughts are not our thought and Gods ways are higher than our ways.  It can be hard to understand why God wants us to live a certain way free from addictive substances, or loyal and virtuous lives.  But the key to understanding God, to living a life after the manner of happiness leading to eternal life (or life as God lives) is to fill our live with the light of Christ and the light of the God's Holy Spirit.

How can we be filled with divine light? To be filled with light, The first and greatest commandment is “Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart” (Matthew 22:37).  If we love God, we must love and serve Jesus Christ. Christ taught that if we love Him we will not only accept Him as our Savior but we will also keep His commandments. We love the Father and Son by feasting upon their words in the scriptures, by listening and harkening to their words we receive by modern prophets, by praying to Our Heavenly Father in the name of Jesus Christ, and then by loving and serving our fellow man. 

As we improve, progress, and purify our lives to live closer to how God desires that His children live, as we tirelessly feed His sheep, love our neighbor, and build His kingdom on the Earth, His divine light with grow within us and which will grow brighter and brighter until the perfect day.  And as His light grows within us, our understanding of God and truth will be magnified. 

Jesus Christ taught us in the Doctrine and Covenants through Joseph Smith:  

45 Let thy bowels also be full of charity towards all men, and to the household of faith, and let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God; and the doctrine of the priesthood shall distil upon thy soul as the dews from heaven.

46 The Holy Ghost shall be thy constant companion, and thy scepter an unchanging scepter of righteousness and truth; and thy dominion shall be an everlasting dominion, and without compulsory means it shall flow unto thee forever and ever.