Reader Post | By JDEV
A CHRISTIAN HERALD
VOL. VII. No. 08
The following thoughts are based upon scriptures, the teachings of prophets and my own experiences in this life. My great hope is that in reading these words you may find some greater light and understanding of your own experiences.
The question, “Why Christ?”, is a worthy question that should be asked by every one who accepts life in this mortal realm. There are answers to this question that will be presented later. However, this question should be preceded by one other question, that may seem to some, more difficult to answer, but it is also necessary. “Why me?”
We awaken from our infant state at some point usually around the age of eight and discover that we are distinct conscious individuals with our own interests and keen sense of justice. Sometimes in life we enjoy a period of solitude, and at other times we are anxious to have company. It is likely that everyone of us has had these experiences over the years. We find ways to deal with those situations, and we go on. At some point, in mortality, we may begin to understand that this life is, in fact, “MORTAL”, which means it will end in not many years. Few of us are quite sure what will become of us, when we finally reach our personal limit in mortality.
Thoughts of pre-mortal life and post-mortal life become more urgent as we progress through this life. In our youth we may see no end, and perhaps that is a good way to view this life, in those hopeful and ambitious years. But as the years pass we often become more aware of the coming end. Our ambitions turn more earnestly to preparing ourselves for post-mortal life if they haven’t already.
Both young and old should meditate on the questions, “Why Me and Why Christ?” Some of us, actually begin to contemplate these matters long before we feel the urgings of age. Those who begin early will in the end find themselves much better prepared for that same inevitable end. But in those preparations they will also find greater comfort and happiness in this life, because of the assurances obtained respecting the life to come.
Maybe a little parable will help to illuminate these thoughts.
A very, very old man was the father of many children, every one of them greatly loved. He had provided each one of them with the means and encouragement to seek his own interests and follow his own determined path in life and loved none of them less for their choices. The old man had built a very great and splendidly beautiful palace. He hoped that some day all his sons and daughters would come and live with him in that palace bringing their children also. He spoke with each one of them many times during their lives, telling them about his palace and what preparations they must complete in order to be able to enter into and live in that great palace with him.
He taught that rules such as, you must love one another and be carful of and kind to one another. Only those who accepted and practiced those rules all their lives could be allowed into that beautiful palace.
Sadly every one of his children had at some point in life been unkind, hateful, mean or unjust to some others. Because they had not kept their fathers statutes they had become unclean and all had lost hope in ever being able to enter into and live with their father in that wonderful palace. “Is there not some way we can make up for the things we did wrong while we were young, careless and selfish?” they asked.
“You can accept punishment for those acts, but how would that make it up to those you hurt? Who would punnish you? If those you hurt were to do to you exactly what you did to them they would still not be compensated for all the pain they have been forced to bear and the scars of your wrongs. When you mistreated your brothers and sisters you sold your birthright to your enemy. Now your enemy will not release you unless you accept a punishment that you certainly cannot endure.”
To everything there is a price. The price of obtaining life in mortality is to be careful of all those around you. The price of some things in life, wrongfully taken, cannot be paid by the taker, not ever. The theft of virtue is unrepayable, unrestorable by the thief. Cruelty against the innocent cannot be undone, ever, by the one who committed the act.
Even those individuals who have not done terrible things to their brothers and sisters in mortality, have somewhere in time, committed some act of meaness or injustice against another, and are therefore, of their own deeds, convicted and left unclean and without hope of a better life to come. All are unclean and so cannot be admitted into the Father’s beautiful palace.
Albeit, there is one way that these hurts can be mended fully, without leaving everyone guilty of hurting another. If there was one, who deserves no punnishment, and who will pay the price, by accepting the punnishment for all the others, the balance could be restored and the hope of all renewed.
Because that innocent one accepted the cruel punnishment of the evil one, in the place of all the errant children, peace was restored. All those who are willing to accept the vicarious payment made for them, by the innocent one and by their more carefully living by fathers statutes afterward, they become worthy to live with their eterrnal Father.
Our Father knew that His children would not be able to pass through this mortal test without error and without help. He also knew that some of His children were rebellious, and if permitted to enter His beautiful and peaceful palace, as they were, they would destroy that beauty and peace. This mortal life therefore became a means of teaching and testing all his children and also of separating out the willfully determined rebellious, who have knowingly chosen darkness. It was their choice to go elsewhere, not Fathers choice to send them.
Some will be surprised to discover that the life in eternity is even more amazingly adventurous and challenging than mortality. God also knows well the feeling of heartbreak. In the scriptures it is written, “…the heavens wept…” seeing that some of his children had firmly chosen the downward path. Even so it is also written that the heavens rejoice more over one that repenteth than over ninty and nine just persons who need no repentance.
With this in mind we can answer the question, “Why Me?” The short answer is because I am, and you are, each, a child of the Most High God, our Father who dearly loves each one of us.
Then we can also answer the question, “WhyChrist?” It is because Father needed one who was innocent and could bear up under the most outrageous punnishment that the evil ones could inflict upon him, to stand in for each one of us, who could not begin to bear such punnishment.
This also finally answers the great question, “Why must we all forgive each other and ourselves for injustices and harms suffered or inflicted upon others, in the course of this great trial, mortal life?” Christ once asked, “What will a man give in exchange for his soul?” We each need to ask ourselves what did Christ give in exchange for each of our souls? Knowing the answer to the previous question will be cause for reflection for each of us. Knowing the answer to the latter question will show us the value of every soul to our Savior, and be cause for many tears from each of us.
The price was paid, by Jesus of Nazareth, the Messiah, our Savior and Reedemer. A small price yet remains for each of us to pay. It consists of turning toward Godliness and Forgiving ourselves and each other for wrongs inflicted or suffered here. The most important decision we will inevitably make in this life is, “Do I accept the atonement of Christ with its conditions?” If the answer is no, you will not see much change in this life or the next. If the answer is a determined yes, then you may enjoy change, improvement, and joy in this world and even exaltation and eternal life in the presence of the Most High God, our Father, in the eternities.
A man was once walking alone along a deserted beach, when he noticed something glittering in the sand. He bent down and picked it up. It was a large and finely cut diamond. He thought for a minute whether he should keep it.
23-02-20 ACH VII – 08 JD
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