Oh, how merciful is our God! And now behold, since it has been as much as we could do to get our stains taken away from us, and our swords are made bright, let us hide them away that they may be kept bright, as a testimony to our God at the last day, or at the day that we shall be brought to stand before him to be judged, that we have not stained our swords in the blood of our brethren since he imparted his word unto us and has made us clean thereby.
And now, my brethren, if our brethren seek to destroy us, behold, we will hide away our swords, yea, even we will bury them deep in the earth, that they may be kept bright, as a testimony that we have never used them, at the last day; and if our brethren destroy us, behold, we shall go to our God and shall be saved. – Alma 24:15-16
In Alma, we learn about a group of people, the Anti-Nephi-Lehis, who were converted by the Nephites. At one point, they were a very wicked, bloodthirsty people. They would murder and stir each other up in anger, just because they could. After they converted, they took upon themselves the name of Nephi and Lehi and devoted themselves to Jesus Christ.
In order to be forgiven of their sins, they made a covenant with God to never kill again. Even when others were coming up to battle against them, they refused to fight. To keep them from being tempted to break their covenant, they buried their weapons in the ground.
I believe each of us has our “favorite sin”, something that we have struggled with for a long time and is hard for us to get rid of. Some of us might even justify our committing this one sin to be okay, because we do everything else so well.
Therefore I would that ye should be perfect even as I, or your Father who is in heaven is perfect. – 3 Nephi 12:48
Jesus Christ has asked us to become perfect, even as he is perfect. This is a tall order, making many of us quit before we begin, because we feel we can never attain that. Our life on earth is our journey to becoming perfect. We won’t become perfect until the resurrection.
While this is a time to make mistakes, it is also a time to learn from those mistakes. We need to bury our own weapons of rebellion. We need to plea with the Father to give us strength to bury our “favorite sin”, that we might be a step closer to becoming perfect. If we will bury our weapons of rebellion, Christ will take our stains away.
When they laid down their weapons of rebellion, they qualified themselves for the Lord’s healing and peace, and so can we. The Savior assures, “If they harden not their hearts, and stiffen not their necks against me, they shall be converted, and I will heal them.” You and I can accept His invitation to “return and repent, and come unto me with full purpose of heart, and I shall heal [you].” – Elder Patrick Kearon
As we swiftly approach the time of Christ’s return, we need to decide who we will serve: Satan or Christ. There is no middle ground.
Just as the Anti-Nephi-Lehis prepared their posterity for the coming of Christ by being obedient and making covenants, we need to do the same.
One of Satan’s tools, one that the Anti-Nephi-Lehis struggled with, is anger.
Understanding the connection between agency and anger is the first step in eliminating it from our lives. We can choose not to become angry. And we can make that choice today, right now: “I will never become angry again.” – Lynn G. Robbins
While it is hard, I know that if we follow the ultimate commandment to love one another, we will be able to suppress anger and ultimately bury our weapons of rebellion.
What will you do to improve yourself and prepare for the coming of Christ?