Tuesday, February 7, 2012

"Line Upon LIne"

There are many reasons for not being able to understand gospel principles. As Nephi explains to his brothers, and as is evident with Corianton, sin can often keep us from understanding. When our lives are cluttered with sin the ways of God just don’t make sense. But sin isn’t always the problem. Sometimes we don’t understand because we haven’t been taught the principle yet. In that case we need to study and search and pray until we do understand. Other times the reason we don’t understand is that what we are questioning is dependent upon principles that come before it and if we didn’t understand those correctly, we can’t understand the new principle. 

As 2 Nephi 28:30 explains:  “For behold, thus saith the Lord God: I will give unto the children of men line upon line, precept upon precept, here a little and there a little; and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, and lend an ear unto my counsel, for they shall learn wisdom.”

We’ve all heard this and understand that we learn one precept at a time. But inherent in this principle is an unstated concept that is also important. If learning is done one principle at a time “precept upon precept” like a mason building a brick wall, then one of the reasons we might not understand is that the first brick is misplaced or not plumb or crooked, so that succeeding bricks won’t fit right. In other words, if a basic principle is not understood, the principles that build on that one won’t be comprehensible. They won’t fit.

But through repentance, study, and humbly analyzing our present understandings we can grow “line upon line,” and “precept upon precept,” and make for ourselves a very firm, straight, enduring brick wall of gospel understanding.

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