------ Forwarded message ------
From: Francis Harper
Francis Harper Message for 8/3/2018
We will be rewarded for doing good deeds. Some quote Ephesians 2:9-10: “For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; but it is a gift of God; not of works, lest any man should boast.” Some argue that we are saved by grace and faith alone. And thus they believe good works are not necessary. Words from The Book of Mormon may be helpful. “For we know that it by grace that we are saved after all we can do” (2 Nephi 11:44). Nevertheless, we should not boast of the good deeds we may have done.
Both; faith and good works are important. James wisely counseled: “What profit is it, my brethren, for a man to say he hath faith, and hath not works? can faith save him? Yea, a man may say, I will show thee I have faith without works; but I say, Show me thy faith without works, and I will show thee my faith by my works. For if a brother or sister be naked and destitute, and one of you say, Depart in peace, be warmed and filled; notwithstanding he give not those things which are needful to the body; what profit is your faith unto such? Even so faith, if it hath not works is dead, being alone” (James 2:14-17).
James continued: “Therefore wilt thou know, O vain man, that faith without works is dead and cannot save you? Thou believest there is one God; thou doest well; the devils also believe, and tremble; thou hast made thyself like unto them, not being justified. Was not Abraham our father justified by works when he had offered Isaac upon the altar? Seest thou how works wrought with his faith, and by works was faith made perfect? . . . Ye see then that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only” (James 2:18-21).
If we keep the second of the great commandments we will be kept busy doing good deeds: “Thou shalt love thy neighbor as thyself” (Matthew 22:38-39). Jesus was speaking of the judgment when he said: “When the Son of Man shall come in his glory, and all the holy angels with him, then he shall sit upon the throne of his glory; and before him shall be gathered all nations; and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth sheep from the goats; the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on his left. And he shall sit upon his throne, and the twelve apostles with him.
“Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was an hungered, and ye gave me meat; I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink; I was a stranger and ye took me in; naked and ye clothed me; I was sick and ye visited me; I was in prison, and ye came unto me.
“Then shall the righteous answer him saying, Lord, When saw we thee an hungered, and fed thee; or thirsty, and gave thee drink? . . . And the King shall answer and say unto them, verily I say unto you, inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me . . . Inasmuch as ye did it not to one of the least of these my brethren, ye did it not unto me. And these shall go away into everlasting punishment; but the righteous into life eternal” (Matthew 25:32-47 IV; 25:31-46 KJV).
We are here to serve our brothers and sisters. King Benjamin said to his people: “When ye are in the service of your fellow beings, ye are in the service of your God” (Mosiah 1:49).
A Chaplain found a wounded soldier on a battle field and asked if he could read some words of scripture and have prayer with him. The wounded man said I am so thirsty, could you give me a drink? The Chaplain gave him a drink from his own supply. Then the soldier said I am so hungry, could you give something to eat? Once again, the Chaplain gave him some of his own ration. Next the soldier said, I am so cold! Then the Chaplain gave the wounded soldier his over-coat. At this point the soldier looked up at the Chaplain and said, If there’s something in the Bible that caused you to do all the things you have done for me, I want to hear it!
My Love to All,
Watch Your Deeds
“. . . if you do not watch yourselves, and your thoughts, and your words, and your deeds, and observe to keep the commandments of God, and continue in the faith of what ye have heard concerning the coming of the Lord, even to the end of your lives, ye must perish” (Mosiah 3:49).
We will be judged according to the deeds done in our mortal bodies. We will face “the righteous judgment of God who will render unto every man according to his deeds; to them who by patient continuance in well doing seek for glory and honor, and immortality, eternal life; But unto them that are contentious, and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, indignation and wrath, tribulation and anguish, upon every soul of man that doeth evil; . . . But glory, honor and peace to every man that worketh good; . . . For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified” (Romans 2:6-13).
Alma asked: “Can ye imagine yourselves brought before the tribunal of God, with your souls filled with guilt and remorse; . . . Yea, a perfect remembrance of all your wickedness? . . . Can you think of being saved when you have yielded yourselves to become subjects of the devil? There can no man be saved except his garments are washed white; Yea, his garments must be purified until they are cleansed from all stain, through the blood of him of whom it has been spoken by our fathers who should come to redeem his people from their sins” (Alma 3:34-40). Alma lived before the birth and ministry of Jesus, yet he knew of his coming and by his blood we can be forgiven or cleansed.
If we can be forgiven why should we be so careful not to do evil deeds again and again? Peter warned: “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ (and his forgiveness), they are again entangled therein, and (are) overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they had known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them. But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, the dog is returned to his own vomit; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire” (2 Peter 2:20-22).
Jesus said to the woman he had forgiven for being caught in the very act of adultery, “Go, and sin no more” (John 8:11). It is written in a latter day revelation, “and now, verily I say unto you, . . . go your ways and sin no more; but that soul who sinneth (again) shall the former sins return, saith the Lord your God” (Doctrine and Covenants 81:2).
We will retain the remission of our sins if we are faithful. King Benjamin counseled: “. . . humble yourselves even in the depths of humility, calling on the name of the Lord daily, and standing steadfastly in the faith of that which is to come . . . And behold, I say unto you, that if ye do this, ye shall always rejoice, and be filled with the love of God, and always retain a remission of your sins. And ye shall grow in the knowledge of the glory of him that created you or in the knowledge of that which is just and true” (Mosiah 2:21-23).