Good morning! I share the following scripture likening experience in order to rejoice in the testimony of so many prophets that we can liken the scriptures unto our own lives.
Even though Alma was asking in these five verses about the experience of a whole group of people, I felt invited to think of his questions applying to me about my own individual past. It turned them into an amazing “hug from heaven.”
PER/SCRIPTURE STUDY—LIKENING ALMA 5:5-10 TO MY OWN HISTORY HOLDS PROFOUND TRUTH
April 18, 2017
Alma 5:5 – DELIVERED OUT OF BONDAGE BY THE POWER OF HIS EVERLASTING WORD
This is how I was delivered originally and every time I’ve been delivered.
Alma 5:6 – DO I REMEMBER HOW HE DELIVERED ME IN FORMER TIMES?
Do I remember how He delivered my former self from bondage? It was by the power of His word.
Do I remember His mercy and longsuffering toward me even though I couldn’t respond perfectly to His counsel? He delivered me even though I needed mercy and longsuffering from Him.
Do I remember that He delivered my soul from hell—from the hell of my enslavement to the lies that bound me to Lynn Bernhard’s abusiveness?
ALMA 5:7 – HOW DID HE DELIVER ME? HE CHANGED MY HEART AND I AWOKE UNTO GOD.
He changed my heart first and foremost. He awakened me out of a state of “deep sleep” or in other words, of total unconsciousness.
And I awoke unto God, unto my Savior, Jesus Christ, as “the Eternal God,” as my only hope, as my source of all power and all wisdom, as my All, my Everything, my Alpha and Omega. His words were my lifeline, leading me. His Spirit (Light) guiding me in my choices. “Nudging me.”
Behold, I was in the midst of darkness. Truly! There is no better phrase to describe being embedded in the darkness (the lies) of my first marriage.
But my soul was illuminated by The Light of the Everlasting Word!! (Jesus Christ.)
ALMA 5:8 – I WAS NOT DESTROYED. INSTEAD, I WAS DELIVERED BY JESUS CHRIST PERSONALLY, LITERALLY.
Was I destroyed? I was not. Why? Because Christ saved me, and not from a distance—not by speaking His words at a distance, not through intermediary persons—mortal or immortal—but by His own direct, singular administration, one on one, heart to heart, cleaving to me, encircling me in his arms. I could feel His words. I could perceive them, receive them, believe them and felt Him empower me to obey them—take action on them.
ALMA 5:9 – AND MY SOUL DID EXPAND AND I DID SING THE SONG OF REDEEMING LOVE!
Yes, it is true. I was loosed and my soul did expand! My journal pages overflowed with testimony from Him and of Him, words of love to Him and from Him.
I experienced Him. I lived these things. Lived in Him—His Spirit, His Light, His Testimony—the testimony of Christ. Not just about Christ, but from Christ.
And I did sing the song of redeeming love, of the living, present, available, cleaving, Christ—my Savior—my Father’s Love to me in and through His Son.
And I say unto you, I was saved!
I was saved from insane behaviors of every kind—insane eating, insane spending, insane emotions, insane beliefs, insane choices of every kind.
I was saved from the need to behave in insane ways, participate in insane relationships.
I was saved from the lies I had been believing and participating in all my life.
I was saved from the idolatry/dependency/addiction to other people’s opinions of me meaning more to me than God’s testimony to me about me.
I was saved from feeling like I was the one responsible for all problems and like I was the one that needed to suffer and pay for my own sins—and even the sins of others!
ALMA 5:10 – THREE QUESTIONS, ONE ANSWER TO THEM ALL
And on what conditions was I saved? The condition of coming unto Christ (Moroni 10:32) and offering my whole soul as an offering unto Him (Omni 1:26), and practicing looking unto Him in every thought instead of doubting and fearing (D&C 6:36) and counseling with Him in all my doings (Alma 37:37.)
And on what grounds was did I have hope for salvation? The same.
And what was the cause of my being loosed from the bands of death and chains of hell—in other words from the lies that I believed and participated in? The same answer.
The same answer—by seeking, finding and believing I was receiving the words of Christ at the veil, cleaving to Him as He already cleaved to me. (Jacob 6:5)
suzanne wright says
Stunning description of our Lord!
Suzanne, as Ammon said, “Who can glory too much in the Lord?” (Alma 26:16)
Thanks so much for your comment. It is great blessing to me to hear from those who recognize what it means to be as President Benson once put it, “Consumed in Christ.” Sincerely, Colleen.