When Benjamin finishes his sermon, he takes an extra step and asks his people “if they believed the words which he had spoken unto them.” (1)
This is a great example for teachers and parents…the asking of students and children if they believe or understand what you’ve taught them. It’s a great way to gauge their spiritual or mental level, to see where they are at and what they retained.
Benjamin’s people answer in the affirmative, that they believe, “and also, we know of their surety and truth, because of the Spirit of the Lord Omnipotent, which has wrought a mighty change in us, or in our hearts, that we have no more disposition to do evil, but to do good continually.” (2)
A Mighty Change
This mighty change should be what any true teacher of Christ seeks for their students—a desire to enlighten minds so the Spirit can grant them new hearts.
No cool object lesson, handout, treat or fantastic presentation will work such a mighty change in another…unless the Spirit is present.
The Spirit works this mighty change in us.
Benjamin’s people had no more desire to do evil, but wanted to do good continually. That’s what a new heart feels like.
When we realize the Spirit is present as we teach, it’s good to pause, like Benjamin did, and point it out to your audience.
- Do you believe?
- Do you feel good right now?
- Is your mind and heart opened?
- Do you feel different?
- That’s the Spirit you feel.
This helps others learn to recognize the Spirit’s influence in their hearts and minds, so they don’t ignore it or misunderstand what they are feeling.
Not only are Benjamin’s people’s dispositions changed, but they “have great views of that which is to come” and feel as if they “could prophesy of all things.” (3)
Their faith “has brought [them] to this great knowledge, whereby [they] do rejoice with such exceedingly great joy.” (4)
New hearts lead to covenant-making
They tell Benjamin they “are willing to enter into a covenant with [their] God to do his will, and to be obedient to his commandments in all things that he shall command [them], all the remainder of [their] days.” (5)
When we experience a mighty change of heart from God, we will want to act on it by making and keeping sacred covenants with Him.
Benjamin tells them that “because of the covenant which ye have made ye shall be called the children of Christ, his sons and his daughters; for behold, this day he hath spiritually begotten you; for ye say that your hearts are changed through faith on his name; therefore, ye are born of him and have become his sons and daughters.” (7)
This transformation—or rebirth—can happen to us each week as we renew our sacramental covenants with God. We can become the children of Christ—His sons and daughters, with new hearts through the enabling and cleansing power of His Atonement.
What a magnificent blessing! To be His spiritual offspring, to partake of His perfection and be transformed from sinners into saints.
New Hearts & an etched Name
Benjamin says that freedom is found in no other name than Christ’s. (8) He pleads again with his people to take their Savior’s name upon them.
Each Sabbath, we can take Christ’s name upon us and feel immediately that heart-changing power again. This name—Jesus Christ—is THE name that holds power to save. It is THE name by which we will be called at the end of time.
I would that ye should remember to retain this name written always in your hearts that ye are not found on the left hand of God, but that ye hear and know the voice by which ye shall be called, and also, the name by which he shall call you.”Mosiah 5:12
Worthily renewing our covenant to take upon us Christ’s name is how we retain His name written on our hearts.
Through study and prayer, we come to recognize the Spirit’s still small voice and know it for what it is—God’s words to us. When we do these things and are enabled through the atoning power of Christ to keep His commandments, we will know His name and Hear Him.
For how knoweth a man the master whom he has not served, and who is a stranger unto him, and is far from the thoughts and intents of his heart?”Mosiah 5:13
The more we serve our God and always remember Him, the deeper His name will be etched upon our hearts.
Therefore, I would that ye should be steadfast and immovable, always abounding in good works, that Christ, the Lord God Omnipotent, may seal you his, that you may be brought to heaven, that ye may have everlasting salvation and eternal life, through the wisdom, and power, and justice, and mercy of him who created all things, in heaven and in earth, who is God above all. Amen.”Mosiah 5:15
Taking Christ’s name upon us enables us to become steadfast and immovable, always abounding in good works. As we serve Him, we come to truly know Him. That is one of the greatest things we can accomplish in this life—the one thing we can do that will bring us everlasting joy and happiness.
Have you experienced this mighty change of heart yet? And if so, do you still feel it?