Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Fortify Your Faith 3 Nephi 3:14

3 Nephi 3:14

Fortify Your Faith

The Lord isn’t asking us to load up a handcart; He’s asking us to fortify our faith.”—Elder M. Russell Ballard, “The Truth of God Shall Go Forth

 14 And he caused that afortifications should be built round about them, and the strength thereof should be exceedingly great. And he caused that armies, both of the Nephites and of the Lamanites, or of all them who were numbered among the Nephites, should be placed as guards round about to watch them, and to guard them from the robbers day and night.

The robbers were a real threat to their safety. They would kill them and destroy their whole nation and their families if they did not protect themselves so they built walls or fortifications to protect themselves inside.

Morm. 2:4
4  And it came to pass that we did come to the city of Angola, and we did take possession of the city, and make preparations to defend ourselves against the Lamanites. And it came to pass that we did fortify the city with our might; but notwithstanding all our fortifications the Lamanites did come upon us and did drive us out of the city.
Morm. 2:21
21  And it came to pass that we did fortify the city of Shem, and we did gather in our people as much as it were possible, that perhaps we might save them from destruction.

Nahum 3:14

    14 Draw thee waters for the siege, fortify thy strong holds: go into clay, and tread the mortar, make strong the brickkiln.
    9 Moreover Uzziah built towers in Jerusalem at the corner gate, and at the valley gate, and at the turning of the wall, and fortified them.

2 Chronicles 11:11

11 And he fortified the strong holds, and put captains in them, and store of victual, and of oil and wine.

Jacob 7:25

25 Wherefore, the people of Nephi did fortifyagainst them with their arms, and with all their might, trusting in the God and rock of their salvation; wherefore, they became as yet, conquerors of their enemies.
They were fortified against evil and seeking the protection of Christ.

APRIL 1979 Fortify Your Homes Against Evil
Spencer W. Kimball President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints

In all of this evidence of progress, there is cause for rejoicing, but unfortunately we cannot proclaim that “all is well in Zion.” We find that we Latter-day Saints are also vulnerable to the destructive forces of evil that are all about us in this sin-sick world. Of the greatest concern in this day are those evils which tear at the fabric of the home and family.
Often we have called upon our people, and we repeat it again, to give attention to the outward appearance of their homes and buildings, the barns, the sheds, the fences, the places of business, to make our communities attractive and desirable. We have asked, and repeat it again and again, that you plant trees and shrubs and vegetables and berry gardens to beautify your properties and help provide for your needs. Your response to these appeals has been gratifying, and many letters have been received telling of your cooperation in these matters, and we are very proud of you.
Don’t stop. Continue on. But while we would encourage you to continue to give attention to the outward appearance of your homes, we now implore you to give more and more attention to the interior of your homes. I do not refer alone to the cleanliness and attractiveness of the home and furnishings, as important as these may be, but to the cleanliness and godliness of the family members and to the general atmosphere that prevails.
The Church’s long-standing concern for children and its massive commitment in time and energy and resources to improve their lot are well-documented. We are constantly seeking ways to strengthen families and bless children, and that commitment will be continued and reinforced this year and in all the years to come.
The Church welcomes the concerns of others to achieve these beneficial ends through appropriate means. We again are reemphasizing, however, that the greatest blessing we can give our own children and that can be extended to all the children of the world will come through the simple processes of teaching and training them in the way of the Lord.
Home life, proper teaching in the home, parental guidance and leadership—these are the panacea for the ailments of the world and its children. They are the cure for spiritual and emotional diseases and the remedy for its problems. Parents should not leave the training of children to others.
Such evils are very real and very threatening. One has but to read the headlines of our newspapers and magazines to become frighteningly aware of the crumbling, destructive influences which surround us.
Perhaps I sound like an alarmist. If so, it is because I am alarmed. I am greatly concerned, and so are my Brethren in the First Presidency and the Council of the Twelve Apostles and others of the General Authorities.
If we could but suggest you go home and lock these evils out by closing and bolting the windows and locking the doors of your homes securely, it would be a simple matter.
However, such security would be ineffective against the evils of which we speak. They come into our homes on ether waves by radio and the television screen. We find these evil forces almost everywhere we go. Exposure is almost constant. We track them into the home from the school, from the playground, from the theater, the office, and the marketplace. There are but few places we go in our everyday world where we can escape them.
What then must be our service? What must we do? We must be constantly alert to their evil presence in our homes and destroy them as we would the germs and filth of disease. We must hunt them from the closets of our minds, freeing ourselves of such worldliness, quenching the embers of wickedness before they become destructive flames. How do we do this?
If we would escape those deadly thrusts of the evil one and keep our homes and families free and solidly fortified against all destructive influences so rampant about us, we must have the help of the very founder and organizer of this family plan—the Creator himself. There is only one sure way and that is through the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ and being obedient to its profound and inspired teachings. Surely we must be made to realize that the purchase price of a family hearth free of such evil influences is the keeping of the commandments of God.

from President Kimball
The history of man evidences that these teachings are true. The rise and fall of civilizations according to the alternating righteousness and wickedness of the peoples proclaim the need to hear and to heed the Savior’s divine messages. We must prepare ourselves, both individually and as a church, to defend the gospel truths against a world steeped in atheism and godlessness. We must oppose the so-called intellectuals who reason that they have all the answers, and we must contend mightily with those whose lust for power and worldly gain destroy their sense of right and wrong.
As members of Christ’s true church we must stand firm today and always for human rights and the dignity of man who is the literal offspring of God in the spirit. We cannot condone a separation of our religious beliefs from our daily living. Righteousness must prevail in our lives and in our homes.
It is a must that we develop a love for Christ and give full allegiance and service in the establishment of his kingdom. Being a good Christian means we must be a good citizen of our country, wherever we live. We must be respectful and honorable in all our relationships with our fellowmen. We must worship the Lord in truth and keep all of his commandments. We must seek for an enlarged capacity to influence the world toward a return to righteousness and a pure love of God.
May the Lord bless us all in our homes and families as we strive to draw nearer to him and keep his commandments, I humbly pray, my beloved brothers and sisters, in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

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