Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Nephi like unto David who slew Goliath and Ammon

I have always loved Nephi for his great faith, and this verse is a great example of that faith. To quickly set the stage, all of the families bows broke and the family is desperately in need of food.

1 Nephi 16:23
...I, Nephi, did make out of wood a bow, and out of a straight stick, an arrow; wherefore, I did arm myself with a bow and an arrow, with a sling and with stones. And I said unto my father: Whither shall I go to obtain food? 

31 And it came to pass that I did slay wild beasts, insomuch that I did obtain food for our families. 


Nephi made a bow and "an arrow," which means that he only made one arrow. He also took a sling and stones but to only make one arrow is impressive. He must have had perfect confidence (faith) in the Lord to bless his abilities to where he would only need one arrow and that it could find its mark the first time, or at least not get lost or broken for a second attempt.

He reminds me of David who too exercised great faith and also hit his mark the first time and slew the great giant Goliath with a sling and a stone. What was this boys motivation to take on Goliath? It was pure faith in God, that He would protect His people, if they would just exercise faith in Him. Amazing!!

Both of them remind me of Ammon who went up against the Lamanite robbers who would regularly scatter the kings flocks. What was interesting with Ammon is that he saw this as an opportunity to win the hearts of the servants who were fearful of being slain by the king for loosing his sheep, and show forth the power of God in preserving the kings flocks.

Alma 17:29
29 Now they wept because of the fear of being slain. Now when Ammon saw this his heart was swollen within him with joy; for, said he, I will show forth my power unto these my fellow-servants, or the power which is in me, in restoring these flocks unto the king, that I may win the hearts of these my fellow-servants, that I may lead them to believe in my words.

Fear and faith truly cannot coexist together. Either we fear the circumstance or we have faith in God to turn the circumstance into our gain whether for training, growth, or refinement.

33 ...Ammon said unto his brethren: Encircle the flocks round about that they flee not; and I go and contend with these men who do scatter our flocks.

34 Therefore, they did as Ammon commanded them, and he went forth and stood to contend with those who stood by the waters of Sebus; and they were in number not a few. http://www.lds.org/scriptures/bofm/alma/17?lang=eng

We learn that not a few was literal because he ended up slaying 6 with his sling (remember David) and then killed the leader by the sword and slew off the arms of as many as raised their arms against Ammon. All in the name of missionary work, in preserving the lives of the servants which in turn saved his live as well. Imagine going up against a whole gang, personally I would rather go up against one giant then a whole gang of trained robbers. And all of this that he might be an instrument in the Lords hands.

In all three of these stories we are taught that the lesson and demonstration of pure faith in God is worth the pain and struggles we go through. All parties were greatly edified by the demonstrations of faith and will never be the same again. We are also taught that when we put the Lord and others lives first, we end up saving our own life in the process. Does that sound familiar...

Matthew 16:25
25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. http://www.lds.org/scriptures/nt/matt/16?lang=eng

So remember to face our trials with pure faith in Christ and serve Him and others and then we will find the solutions we have prayed for and sought after in our own lives. Allow these three stories to edify and uplift our faith and desires of service and we will literally see miracles happen all around us.


Craig

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