If either truth or the doing of that truth aren’t present we won’t be able to become, and we won’t increase in light and truth. Paradoxically we won’t be able to see and receive the full truth of anything unless we do the little parts we’ve been given. We won’t increase if we don’t apply what we know. It takes us doing the little bit of truth we know to get more truth so we can then DO it also and continue to increase in light and truth.
As we increases in truth, as we increase in our knowledge of Christ, (because we’ve DONE as He asked) we increase in having His presence with us more and more and therefore we become like Him because we have Him with us more often and have Him to teach and prepare our minds for more of His truth so we can DO and become more like Him. In other words we elect over and over again to obey and follow Him when He calls us.
“The Spirit of truth is of God. I am the Spirit of truth, and John bore record of me, saying: He received a fulness of truth, yea, even of all truth” (D&C 93:26)
“For the word of the Lord is truth, and whatsoever is truth is light, and whatsoever is light is Spirit, even the Spirit of Jesus Christ.” (D&C 84:45)
This may seem elementary, and it is, but it isn’t as well. For if we aren’t increasing daily in our relationship with Christ, or increasing in knowledge and understanding of Truth, increasing in our ability to DO the gospel then we’re not only not becoming like Him and being perfected, but we’re loosing our power as well. We’re either increasing in light or loosing light. There is no stagnation or standing still in this process.
“Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.” Matt 5:19
It’s not until we DO the will of God and what He teaches that we can become full of truth and light, and therefore be perfect even as He’s perfect. It isn’t something that can’t be done or that should be feared. It’s the simple equation of:
Learn + Do = Become
Knowledge + Action = Becoming
Perfection isn’t only about being perfect as we see it, but it’s about being full of light and truth as Christ was. The only way to really increase in light and truth is to act in light and truth, but to act in light and truth we must see and be aware of truth. If we aren’t aware of truth, we can’t act in truth with any consistency. We may at times be able to do somethings that bring us joy (which is also truth) but we won’t be able to repeat it over and over again at will. The repetition causes the cumulative increase. My husband often says “even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while.” But to be able to consistently and consciously repeat the light gaining activities we must have the truth to start with.
Have you ever wondered why God said
“They who are not chosen have sinned a very grievous sin, in that they are walking in darkness at noon-day.’
This scripture isn’t meant for the people who don’t have the gospel, it’s for those who DO. It’s given to those who have the option of being chosen don’t apply what they have been given and don’t become full of light and truth. We stand with so much truth around us but we’re not applying and DOING it. Therefore we’re standing in the light of the noon day sun and ignoring it. We aren’t taking it into ourselves because we aren’t becoming it through DOING the gospel.
This is also the reason we have the curse of darkened minds and are still under condemnation since September of 1832.
“And your minds in times past have been darkened because of unbelief, and because you have treated lightly the things you have received— Which vanity and unbelief have brought the whole church under condemnation. And this condemnation resteth upon the children of Zion, even all. And they shall remain under this condemnation until they repent and remember the new covenant, even the Book of Mormon and the former commandments which I have given them, not only to say, but to do according to that which I have written— That they may bring forth fruit meet for their Father’s kingdom; otherwise there remaineth a scourge and judgment to be poured out upon the children of Zion. For shall the children of the kingdom pollute my holy land? Verily, I say unto you, Nay.”
When we make covenants with the Lord we’re then responsible to DO those covenants and if we don’t DO them we come under condemnation and sour minds become darkened – they lose light. Darkness is a natural consequence of not doing our convenience and not increasing in light and knowledge.
When we don’t have knowledge but try to DO good we’re more blessed than if we know but don’t do what we know. There is a gift and blessing to correct action, even if it’s not based in understanding or truth. But still it’s like the Japanese proverb which says “Vision without action is a daydream but action without vision is a nightmare.” Because this life is to learn to DO what we know, or do the best that we know, there is a greater blessing to DOING than gaining intellectual knowledge without the physical DOING incorporated into it but it’s a hit and miss undertaking. It’s like shooting without aiming. At times you may hit what you want to, but more than likely not.
We came from a place of understanding and intellectual knowledge and now we’re here on earth to acquire experience and physical knowledge. The sheer fact that we’re here to gain knowledge from DOING is based in the purpose of why we’re here – to gain experience that’s for our good. We can’t do that if we aren’t willing to DO what we’ve learned. We can only change through applying the grace of God in the actions He requires of us like, faith and repentance, not through knowing things that make us think we’re smarter or wiser or more righteous than another person. This is vanity which is another reason we come under condemnation.
When we understand that we must increase in light and truth and that this is only done through becoming like Christ, and becoming like Christ only happens when we do our covenants and commandments it becomes very clear why we, as a group are under condemnation and in darkness. We’re not doing our covenants or the commandments the way we should. That raises a whole new concern though! How do we DO our covenants and commandments? And what does that have to do with the grace of God? We haven’t even begun to address the part of the equation that underlies everything: grace.
Grace is bigger than any of us have realized. There’s more to grace than can be taught in one short post so we’ll talk about that next. For now we can start to ponder perfection and know that the pursuit of perfection is the pursuit of light and truth.