Friday, December 23, 2011

Christmas in the Book of Mormon

The Jews in the Old World were not the only people awaiting the Messiah. On the American continent many of the Nephites eagerly anticipated the day. But there were also many people who didn’t believe, and they began to scorn and persecute the believers. The persecution became so bad the wicked people proclaimed that if the sign of the coming of the Lord did not occur by a certain day, they would kill all the believers.

Samuel the Lamanite prophesies
of the birth of Jesus Christ.
The prophet at the time, Nephi, was filled with sorrow at the wickedness around him. For years he had tried to help the people but so many of them refused to believe and repent. Now as they issued their mandate, he prayed mightily all day long in behalf of his people asking that the Lord would be born so that the righteous who awaited the Messiah would not be killed. After hours of prayer he heard a voice 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 fulfil all that which I have caused to be spoken by the mouth of my holy prophets” (3 Nephi 1:13).

As promised that night the sun went down, but there was no darkness. It must have been a strange experience to watch the sun disappear beyond the horizon and yet the sky remain as light as if it were noontime. The believers rejoiced as they recognized the sign given them by Samuel the Lamanite. But those who had threatened to kill the believers were frightened and many of them fell to the ground as if they were dead. Fear filled them for they knew that they had been wrong, and they worried about what would now happen to them. That entire night the light continued and the next morning the people watched as the sun rose on an already bright sky.

I love to think about this story and reflect on what it teaches me not only about the bitrh of Jesus Christ but about me being born again in Him. When Christ has been born again within us there is no longer darkness. When we have experienced the mighty change of heart, even a situation thatthe world says should bring great darkness into our lives such as the death of a loved one or any other tragedy is mitigated by the light of Christ within us. When a person loves and trusts in Jesus Christ, there is always light shining brightly.


Mike and Julie said...

Each post just keeps getting better. Thank you!

Becky Rose said...

Thank you for doing this all month! I have this book of secular stories- some from church magazines, little house on the prairie and such along with a scripture and a Christmas song, but this is by far the best for getting one into the real meaning of Christmas. I hope you don't mind if I print them all out. I'll give you the credit.