3 Nephi 1:17
If Ye Had Known Me
Of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles
“Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.
“Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works?
“And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”2
Our understanding of this episode is enlarged as we reflect upon an inspired revision to the text. Significantly, the Lord’s phrase reported in the King James Version of the Bible, “I never knew you,” was changed in the Joseph Smith Translation to “Ye never knew me.”3
Consider also the parable of the ten virgins. Recall that the five foolish and unprepared virgins went to obtain oil for their lamps after hearing the cry to go and meet the bridegroom.
A grand objective of mortality is not merely learning about the Only Begotten of the Father but also striving to know Him. Four essential steps that can help us come to know the Lord are exercising faith in Him, following Him, serving Him, and believing Him.
The exercise of faith in Jesus Christ is relying upon His merits, mercy, and grace.7 We begin to come to know the Savior as we arouse our spiritual faculties and experiment upon His teachings, even until we can give place in our souls for a portion of His words.8 As our faith in the Lord increases, we trust in Him and have confidence in His power to redeem, heal, and strengthen us.
“And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers.
“And they straightway left their nets, and followed him.”17
“For how knoweth a man the master whom he has not served, and who is a stranger unto him, and is far from the thoughts and intents of his heart?”25
We more fully come to know the Lord as we serve Him and labor in His kingdom. As we do so, He generously blesses us with heavenly help, spiritual gifts, and increased capacity. We are never left alone as we work in His vineyard.
He declared: “For I will go before your face. I will be on your right hand and on your left, and my Spirit shall be in your hearts, and mine angels round about you, to bear you up.”26
I am acquainted with Church members who accept as true the doctrine and principles contained in the scriptures and proclaimed from this pulpit. And yet they have a hard time believing those gospel truths apply specifically in their lives and to their circumstances. They seem to have faith in the Savior, but they do not believe His promised blessings are available to them or can operate in their lives. I also encounter brothers and sisters who fulfill their callings dutifully but for whom the restored gospel has not yet become a living and transforming reality in their lives. We come to know the Lord as we not only believe in Him but also believe Him and His assurances.
On a future day, “every knee shall bow, and every tongue confess”39 that Jesus is the Christ. On that blessed day, we will know He knows each of us by name. And I witness and promise we can not only know about the Lord but also come to know Him as we exercise faith in, follow, serve, and believe Him. I so testify in the sacred name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Elder Bednar says it all
faith, follow, serve and believe. We can serve Him in so many ways as we serve others.
We need to by like the five wise virgins who were prepared at His coming.
201- Joy To the World or any Christmas Carol!
32- When He Comes Again