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Insight Archive

Friday, October 11, 2013

Chastity: Controling Our Power to Create

This topic is one which is uncomfortable to most people, and is a primarily large cause of bondage. I want to see people become free, and use their God-given right to choose for truth and righteousness. Therefore , It must be said.
I understand a little more fully what Jacob felt when he said, "it grieveth my soul and causeth me to shrink with shame before the presence of my Maker, that I must testify unto you concerning the wickedness of your hearts. And also it grieveth me that I must use so much boldness of speech concerning you, before your wives and your children, many of whose feelings are exceedingly tender and chaste and delicate before God, which thing is pleasing unto God; And it supposeth me that they have come up hither to hear the pleasing word of God, yea, the word which healeth the wounded soul." (Jacob 2: 6-8)

It is interesting to note that further Jacob says, "Wherefore, it burdeneth my soul that I should be constrained, because of the strict commandment which I have received from God, to admonish you according to your crimes, to enlarge the wounds of those who are already wounded, instead of consoling and healing their wounds; and those who have not been wounded, instead of feasting upon the pleasing word of God have daggers placed to pierce their souls and wound their delicate minds." (Jacob 2: 9)
Jacob said these things to open up to a talk on Chasity. He said he had to "enlarge the wounds of those who are wounded." He knew pointing these things had to be said with children, mothers, and wives present. Pointing out their faults would make them feel the gut-wrenching feeling of guilt, instead of lifting the burden thereof. Elder David A. Bednar, an Apostle of the Lord Jesus Christ, stated, "All of us have experienced the pain associated with a physical injury or wound. When we are in pain, we typically seek relief and are grateful for the medication and treatments that help to alleviate our suffering. Consider sin as a spiritual wound that causes guilt or, as described by Alma to his son Corianton, “remorse of conscience” (Alma 42:18). Guilt is to our spirit what pain is to our body—a warning of danger and a protection from additional damage."
I remember a time when I went swimming. I had a pretty bad fall, and fell into the river. I panicked and got to the side as quickly as possible. I was walking toward my family, and they pointed out something on my leg. I looked down to see that I was bleeding profusely. I couldn't feel the pain, until it was pointed out to me. I didn't understand I was damaged. Therefore, it is important to understand when we are hurt, and pointing it out is how we understand.
 Paul wrote, "If any man defile the temple of God, him shall God destroy; for the temple of God is holy, which temple ye are" (1 Corinthians 3: 16). It is simple to understand that we must treat our bodies as they are from God, because they are. But to some, it isn't enough. The importance of temples is demonstrated in the Old Testament. But the importance is demonstrated in His plan of Happiness for us. Jehovah, Himself, had to come a receive a body of His own. Elder Jeffery R. Holland, another Apostle of Christ, noted, "If having a body is not only not needed but not desirable by Deity, why did the Redeemer of mankind redeem His body, redeeming it from the grasp of death and the grave, guaranteeing it would never again be separated from His spirit in time or eternity?" 
 Having a perfect body is what Our Father wants us to have, but misusing this God given gift is a form of mockery. In a separate address, Elder Holland stated, "The body is an essential part of the soul. This distinctive and very important Latter-day Saint doctrine underscores why sexual sin is so serious. We declare that one who uses the God-given body of another without divine sanction abuses the very soul of that individual, abuses the central purpose and processes of life, “the very key” to life, as President Boyd K. Packer once called it. In exploiting the body of another—which means exploiting his or her soul—one desecrates the Atonement of Christ, which saved that soul and which makes possible the gift of eternal life."
 When one mocks the Atonement of Christ, His suffering, death and resurrection, they are dismissing the gift He has given us. Elder Holland put is best when he said, "Any who dismiss the concept of an embodied God dismiss both the mortal and the resurrected Christ. No one claiming to be a true Christian will want to do that."
One of the truths taught in the Bible is that was are the children of God (Acts 17: 29). Paul said, "We are the offspring of God..." Paul wrote in his epistle to the Romans,  "And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ"(Romans 8:17). He wants us to inherit ALL he hath (Revelations 21: 7). Each person has potential to have a divine destiny, and we ought to look at everybody as children of God.

Elder Holland pleads, "Please, never say: “Who does it hurt? Why not a little freedom? I can transgress now and repent later.” Please don’t be so foolish and so cruel. You cannot with impunity “crucify Christ afresh." "Flee fornication," Paul cries, and flee “anything like unto it," the Doctrine and Covenants adds (which mean pornography also). Why? Well, for one reason because of the incalculable suffering in both body and spirit endured by the Savior of the world so that we could flee. We owe Him something for that. Indeed, we owe Him everything for that. “Ye are not your own,” Paul says. “Ye [have been] bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s." In sexual transgression the soul is at stake—the body and the spirit."

 God has given man and woman a very powerful gift. That is to create mortal life. This gift must wait until man and woman are one. Because it creates an environment where they grow closer spiritually, and become one. When this is done outside of marriage, it rips them both apart, spiritually.
 Elder Holland counsels, "In matters of human intimacy, you must wait! You must wait until you can give everything, and you cannot give everything until you are legally and lawfully married. To give illicitly that which is not yours to give (remember, “you are not your own”) and to give only part of that which cannot be followed with the gift of your whole self is emotional Russian roulette. If you persist in pursuing physical satisfaction without the sanction of heaven, you run the terrible risk of such spiritual, psychic damage that you may undermine both your longing for physical intimacy and your ability to give wholehearted devotion to a later, truer love. You may come to that truer moment of ordained love, of real union, only to discover to your horror that what you should have saved you have spent, and that only God’s grace can recover the piecemeal dissipation of the virtue you so casually gave away. On your wedding day the very best gift you can give your eternal companion is your very best self—clean and pure and worthy of such purity in return.(Boldness and underline added)" 

Because it is His power, we must use it in His bounds, and not make a mockery of it through misuse.
Elder Holland stated,  "One aspect of that divinity given to virtually all men and women is the use of His power to create a human body, that wonder of all wonders, a genetically and spiritually unique being never before seen in the history of the world and never to be duplicated again in all the ages of eternity. A child, your child—with eyes and ears and fingers and toes and a future of unspeakable grandeur."
"Unspeakable Grandeur!" A child is a son or daughter of God. Therefore, they have a divine destiny. They deserve the most blessings we can give them, and that is of raising them in a family ordained of God.

There are blessings for being chaste, and choosing to be pure. Elder Bednar Stated in April 2013, " Significantly, disciplining the natural man in each of us makes possible a richer, a deeper, and a more enduring love of God and of His children. Love increases through righteous restraint and decreases through impulsive indulgence.
President Marion G. Romney declared:' I can think of no blessings to be more fervently desired than those promised to the pure and the virtuous. Jesus spoke of specific rewards for different virtues but reserved the greatest, so it seems to me, for the pure in heart, ‘for they,’ said he, ‘shall see God’ (Matt. 5:8). And not only shall they see the Lord, but they shall feel at home in his presence. 'Here is … the Savior’s promise: ‘Let virtue garnish thy thoughts unceasingly; then shall thy confidence wax strong in the presence of God’ (D&C 121:45)' (“Trust in the Lord,” Ensign, May 1979, 42). We also are promised that, as we pursue the pathway of virtue, 'the Holy Ghost shall be [our] constant companion' (D&C 121:46). Thus, living the law of chastity invites some of the greatest blessings men and women can receive in mortality: appropriate spiritual confidence in the presence of family, friends, Church associates, and, ultimately, the Savior. Our innate longing to belong is fulfilled in righteousness as we walk in the light with hope."

When we feel pain physically, we desire to sooth it as soon as possible. It ought to be the same spiritually. Elder Bednar noted, "The Savior is often referred to as the Great Physician, and this title has both symbolic and literal significance... From the Atonement of the Savior flows the soothing salve that can heal our spiritual wounds and remove guilt. However, this salve can only be applied through the principles of faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, repentance, and consistent obedience. The results of sincere repentance are peace of conscience, comfort, and spiritual healing and renewal.
"Your bishop or branch president is the spiritual physician’s assistant who is authorized to help you repent and heal. Please remember, however, that the extent and intensity of your repentance must match the nature and severity of your sins—especially for Latter-day Saints who are under sacred covenant. Serious spiritual wounds require sustained treatment and time to heal completely and fully."

I second the words of Elder Bendar when he says, "The doctrine I have described will seem to be archaic and outdated to many people in a world that increasingly mocks the sanctity of procreation and minimizes the worth of human life. But the Lord’s truth is not altered by fads, popularity, or public opinion polls. I promise that obedience to the law of chastity will increase our happiness in mortality and make possible our progress in eternity. Chastity and virtue are now, always have been, and always will be “most dear and precious above all things” (Moroni 9:9)."

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