Repentance Talk

This is a talk I gave not too long ago on the subject of repentance. I talk about the higher and lower laws, the Aaronic and Melchizedek Priesthoods, why the sacrament has separate and different prayers.

Repentance Talk


Raw Transcript


Repentance Talk


this is a talk that I gave not too long

ago on the subject of repentance talk a

little bit about the higher and lower

laws here or the Melchizedek and Aaronic

laws repentance is an Aaronic

priesthood function I give some examples

of that with John the Baptist and a

little bit of Isaiah I believe in this

as well here you go in those days Came

John the Baptist preaching in the

wilderness of Judea saying repent ye for

the kingdom of heaven is at hand these

are the first words by Matthew

attributed to John the Baptist as he

preached in the wilderness and

appropriately so in all four of the

Gospels in the New Testament the authors

carefully lay a framework for John the

Baptist as the precursor to Christ in

all four Gospels he is preaching

repentance or baptism unto repentance

why in each of the Gospels there is also

a reference to Isaiah’s prophecy of one

crying in the wilderness prepare either

way make his paths straight this is in

reference to John the Baptist as the

preparer the one who cleared the royal

path so that the king could come in his


it is John the Baptist who is the icon

of the Aaronic priesthood it is he that

personally came to Joseph Smith and

Oliver Cowdery to give them the Aaronic

priesthood by the laying on of hands

it is the ironic priesthood that is the

preparatory priesthood we often confuse

this term preparatory with young men who

will eventually be receiving the

monistic priesthood but the priesthood

is not named because of the bearer but

rather for the principles it governs as

we are told in the Doctrine and

Covenants speaking of the lesser

priesthood the Lord says this priesthood

holdeth the keys of the ministering of

angels and the preparatory gospel which

gospel is the gospel of repentance and

of Baptism and the remission of sins and

the law of carnal Commandments it is

what we do to reach to heaven so

repentance is a part of that preparatory

gospel which affords us the greater

blessings of the gospel of Jesus Christ

and the Melchizedek Priesthood the

priesthood that represents Jesus Christ

and what he did to reach down to us and

allows us to fully invite the grace of

God in Jesus Christ into our lives to

live a happier more fulfilled life it is

this preparatory path that should

intrigue us in this moment and that I

call your attention to in this talk

repentance is a looking forward

sacrifice something today for something

better tomorrow

therefore repentance turns our hearts

and minds toward the future and

hopefully toward an eternal perspective

this is Alma 20 to 16 or it says if thou

wilt repent of all thy sins and will bow

down before God and call on his name in

faith then shalt thou receive the hope

which thou desirest if then repentance

first as the preparation than the hope

of eternal life as a result

whore appeared in the Book of Mormon

about 90 years before the birth of


he taught of a shortcut a way back to

God without repentance he taught that

all mankind should be saved at the last

day for the Lord had created all men and

had also redeemed all men and in the end

all men should have eternal life that’s

Alma 1 for but are we meant to be

coddled in such a way was that the plan

in heaven the plan of happiness is it a

plan determined to cut and unfold us as

spiritual snowflakes or were we meant to

grow reaching to heaven through faith

and repentance to gain a greater hope

through struggle that struggle leading

us to the greatest joy after all it is

Lehi who says Adam fell that men might

be and men are that they may have joy as

we know there is one path back to God

there is no other way the choice is

simply do we align ourselves with

reality and the hierarchy of value set

before us in the gospel or do we use our

own hierarchy of values we could look at

repentance as a rearranging of

priorities in mind spirit and behavior a

rearranging of our own hierarchy of

values as we are told in the Ten

Commandments thou shalt have no other

gods before me this is simply telling us

the way forward should we choose it

elder Christofferson puts it succinctly

it would mock the Savior’s suffering in

the Garden of Gethsemane and on the

cross for us to expect that he should

transform us into angelic beings with no

real effort on our part rather we seek

His grace to complement and reward our

most diligent efforts perhaps as much as

praying for mercy we should pray for

time and opportunity to work and strive

and overcome he says how do we change

with repentance is it an act or perhaps

a state of mind I

lies on d’etre repentant converts find

that the truths of the restored gospel

govern their thoughts and deeds shape

their habits and forge their character

that’s elder Nelson now president Nelson

Korihor another book of Mormon

character preached something similar but

nuanced to Nehor his preaching was to

the effect that there would could be no

atonement made for the sins of men but

every man fared in this life according

to the management of the creature

therefore every man prospered according

to his genius and that every man

concurred according to his strength and

whatsoever a man did was no crime that’s

Alma 3017 this is a purely spiritually

libertarian point of view

it requires no repentance it requires no

atonement these false prophets and their

followers did not believe in the

repentance of their sins it is

interesting that we find throughout the

Book of Mormon that where repentance is

not taught neither is the need for

Christ and His grace tucked there’s a

lot said about grace in the last several

years much needed by the way but it is

important to understand also incredibly

important that it is the gift of God the

gift our Father in Heaven gave us in

Christ and his sacrifice but it is only

half of the atonement any gift unused is

useless our job is to take advantage of

that gift to see the opportunity for

what it is and repent which is to say

become more like the creature we were

created to be become more like the

Savior one way to learn about repentance

is through consequences today natural

laws are becoming ignored they happily

provide us with natural consequences

there is a movement to deny science to

deny gender to deny nature even the

natural man we are told to put off the

natural man but not to ignore it our job

is to live with in mortality and

overcome it our job is to understand our

responsibilities while in mortality and

the consequences that go with them when

I was in high school we used to have a I

took Auto Body and we used to have an

old male jeep and you know the ones I’m

talking about they’re the smaller ones

with a steering wheel on the right-hand

side so that the mailman could go along

the sidewalks in the roads and just

drop off the mail at each house into

the mailbox out on the preferably out on

the curb and we had one of those and we

chopped off the top and made it

convertible and then we worked on the

body a little bit primered the whole

thing out we were going to paint it up and

but it didn’t run very well and

sometimes when you would gun it yeah you

know when I say going to do you’re talking

about a very small engine but it

would pop out at a spark plug

and the brakes were horrible what they

would do is you would just tap the

brakes and they would fully lock up and

so if you’re going along in the mail

Jeep here in the Jeep and you needed to

slow down you would tap the brake and

they would lock up and so that’s just

how you did it but we would take this

thing out after school sometimes and I

went to school at a high school that was

up in the hills and there was a lot of

open area and just roaming hills that we

were able to go through and they have

these little paths that we could drive

this thing through and we used to take

it back into the hills and drive around

and one day it was the day after it had

just rained and the Sun came out really

Harley strongly the next day and really

hardened up the dirt but what it what

happens is is when it rains and

then gets really hot the neck

day is that it leaves the ground hard

but this on the surface it gets a little

sandy and so we took this thing out and

we’re going down this hill and making

this turn it kind of turns and starts to

get strong a tighter and tighter on the

turn and steeper and steeper on the hill

and I was driving and I was with two of

my friends and we start going down the

hill and we start gaining speed and I

try to tap on the brake here and there

to try and slow things down but because

of the way the road was with the

sand on top it was just it was just

sliding it wasn’t slowing down at all

and then if I just held the brakes

on it we lost complete control the

problem is is downward making the turn

to the left up down the right-hand side

there’s a very steep hill and so we’re

turning left tighter and tighter the

wheels come up on the left-hand side a

little bit as we start going down and I

try to straighten it out it they come

back down as soon as they come back down

my other two friends jump out and it

wasn’t bad they jump out into the grass

you know the tall grass on the hill and

and they’re fine I’m still in the in the

Jeep and I’m going faster and faster and

I’m trying to save this thing and I I

finally make a tight turn again I have

no around it the wheels come up again

and as the wheels come up I just jumped

I just jumped right out of the

driver’s seat down the right-hand side

and rolled down the hill a little bit

and looked up and as I looked up the

Jeep had actually landed back down on

all four wheels but then went off the

path and then went screaming down this

hill just bouncing all over the place it

jumped a gully and actually ended up on

the other side of the gully and bent the

frame as it landed in on the other the

other side of the gully there are

consequences and we shouldn’t have been

taking that thing out and we shouldn’t

have we knew that there were problems

with the brakes and

with the engine and that it was not it

was not a very safe thing to do

consequences they exist and it’s our job

to try and work with in mortality and

where necessary repent and change

ourselves fix ourselves improve

ourselves so that we can have a little

bit of a more smooth ride and hopefully

affect those around us as well

Alma the younger after being subtly

reminded as you recall not so subtly

reminded of who he was and about

spiritual consequences tells us about

his experience with repentance they are

some of my favorite words in Scripture

hmm he says nevertheless after wading

through much tribulation repenting nigh

unto death the Lord in mercy hath seen

fit to snatch me out of an everlasting

burning and I am born of God my soul

hath been redeemed from the gall of

bitterness and bonds of iniquity I was

in the darkest abyss but now I behold

the marvelous light of God my soul was

wracked with eternal torment but I am

snatched and my soul is pained no more

consequences are lessons they are

opportunities to focus on change on

repentance when I am in need of

blessings I forget sometimes to first

ask what do I need to do how do I need

to change what would bring me closer to

you in looking at natural law and

spiritual law as well as the preparatory

gospel and the fullness of the gospel we

might look to the ordinance that we

previously participated in just a few

minutes ago the atonement is shown in

the ordinance of the sacrament the

sacrament is a representation of the two

ordinances of Baptism and the gift of

the Holy Ghost one in ironic preparatory

ordinance the other a Melchizedek

ordinance in

the bread we have the carnal or flesh

judgment Commandments repentance in the

wine or water we have the gift of

opportunity through sacrifice through

blood this is Grace this is mercy the

sacrament represents the two sides of

atonement or at one mint we might even

think about our own efforts to be at one

with God when we partake of the bread

our focus could be on repentance here

and then think of what the Savior did

for us when we drink of the water just

as there are four gospel accounts of

John the Baptist preparing the coming of


I’d like to use four words to season the

word repentance now come now calm is a

Hebrew word used in the Old Testament

which means to be sorry to console

oneself to repent regret or even to be

comforted dead Bhutan is an old English

word day botan means better deed or to

make a deed better can we change that

behavior is what its implication is the

Savior’s sacrifice gives us an ever

accessible gift a perpetual opportunity

as he says in the New Testament seven

times seventy times if necessary

there’s also Metanoia which is the Greek

translation of the word repent in the

New Testament it essentially means a

change of mind it’s a little different

in nuance in meaning because it it means

a little bit more about our state of

mind so we can look at repentance in a

way that is we change a deed we’ve done

something wrong we need to improve

ourselves in that thing or repent and

unburden ourselves with something that

we’ve done or we can also look at it is

are we in a repentance state a

repentance state of mind and a spirit

where we are humble

and living a specific way as a repentant

person and that’s a little bit more what

Metanoia would mean president Nelson has

stated that here I quote thanks to the

ransom paid by the atonement of Jesus

Christ full forgiveness is given to the

sinner who repents and remains free from

sin and then lastly teshuva is another

Hebrew word for repent in the Old

Testament the root shove means to return

which is kind of cool it’s like a return

to God yes in a way

so repentance gives us the opportunity

to participate in the atonement that’s

our part repentance in conclusion

prepare ye the way we can all clear out

our own paths ready it for our own

travel but more importantly invite the

healer to come down our path the king to

come down our path clear it to invite

the peace and greater happiness and

fulfillment in our lives that the Lord

has waiting for us the atonement is a

two-way street with this all in mind I

pray that we can all participate more

fully in our covenant relationship with

God and participate more fully in the

atonement through repentance to be sorry

to change to return and to be healed and

I say these things in the name of Jesus

Christ amen

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