Tuesday, September 30, 2014

2 Nephi 10:24-25 -- On Reconciliation

"Wherefore, my beloved brethren, reconcile yourselves to the will of God, and not to the will of the devil and the flesh; and remember, after ye are reconciled unto God, that it is only in and through the grace of God that ye are saved.
Wherefore, may God raise you from death by the power of the resurrection, and also from everlasting death by the power of the atonement, that ye may be received into the eternal kingdom of God, that ye may praise him through grace divine. Amen."
2 Nephi 10:24-25

To reconcile means to restore balance or harmony or agreement.  It can be used in sort of a negative way, to say "I am reconciled to my fate."  We aren't really happy about it, but we have accepted it.  I don't think that is the way that Jacob uses it here though.  I think he means active participation in the process that will result in happiness and peace, not resentment and acceptance of the inevitable.  It's a process that we go through as we learn and grow and strive for perfection.  Maybe we never really become perfect in this life, but working towards it anyway brings us closer and closer to being in perfect harmony with God... having our spirits reconciled with his.
We choose each day whether to become more like, or less like, God--to move towards harmony or disharmony, balance or imbalance.  And even though in this life we are certain to fall short of perfect agreement, God's grace makes up the difference, as long as we are there, reaching for it.The final verse in this selection talks about death and everlasting death: two different things.  God saves us from the death of the body through the resurrection.  This will happen whether we have harmony with God or not.  The spiritual death is where the atonement comes into play... where the harmony matters.  To understand a tiny taste of what spiritual death is like, we can consider what we call a conscience.  Our consciences, when working properly, help us know when we are in and out of balance with God, and can sometimes cause us considerable pain if we do something that creates a large rift between what we have done and what we believe is right.  Repentance helps ease this sort of pain, and helps us move back into balance.
Today, let's work on reconciliation with God's will.  Let's listen to the spirit and let God guide us toward his kingdom and bless us with his grace.

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