Saturday, June 26, 2010

Building on the Rock

Helaman 5:12 tells us to “remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God that ye must build your foundation” in order to withstand the buffetings of Satan.

The word remember holds particular significance to me. In Alma 5 Alma the Younger counsels his people to remember the captivity of their fathers, and he recounts his father’s change of heart in the face of Abinadi, and the Lord’s saving those people from their oppressors. He encourages the people to remember their own conversion. Surely one way to build upon the rock of Christ is to remember. Another is to – as Alma did – heed the words of God’s prophet.

Alma asks the people to remember their own conversion and asks if the people have the image of Christ in their countenances – do they look like Christ because of what they do? Another way to build on the rock of Christ is to act as He did.

There’s a great story told at least three times in the scriptures – first in Numbers 21 – of the fiery serpents which afflict the Israelites. Moses is told to lift one on his staff, and if the people would look, they’d be healed. 1 Nephi 17:41 tells us some did not look because of the simpleness of the way. Doing the simple things God asks us to do through His prophet is another way to build upon the rock of Christ.

The sacrament prayers are also about remembering. We eat the bread in remembrance of the body of Christ and drink the water in remembrance of His blood. In the prayer on the bread we’re reminded that we certify that we are willing to take His name upon us, that we will remember His always, and keep his commandments.

Elder Oaks years ago spoke of the sacrament and suggested that when we are baptized we begin to take Christ’s name upon us, but we do not completely do it until we have entered into temple covenants. Preparing for and attending the temple are ways we build upon the rock of Christ.

Again, we remember Him, and as we remember Him it becomes easier to keep his commandments.

Here is something else I know about the rock of Christ: The Savior lives. He loves us. His rock does not move. His arms are outstretched waiting for us to come home to Him. We may make choices that move us away from Him, but he waits patiently for us, having already suffered for our sins, having already atoned for us. All we need to do is come to Him and build on His rock.

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