Jesus says He has been commanded by the Father to go visit more of His sheep that are not in America or Jerusalem. So, that shows there is another record out there we do not have yet of a different people who saw Christ and heard Him speak after His resurrection. Pretty cool.
Christ tells the Nephites “that through the fullness of the Gentiles, the remnant of their seed (the Jews), who shall be scattered forth upon the face of the earth because of their unbelief, may be brought in, or may be brought to a knowledge of me, their Redeemer.” (4)
The next thing He says about the Gentiles shows how important the Holy Ghost is in our lives.
And blessed are the Gentiles because of their belief in me, in and of the Holy Ghost, which witnesses unto them of me and of the Father.”3 Nephi 16:6
The Gentiles only had the Holy Ghost to witness to them of the Father’s and Jesus Christ’s reality, yet it was more than enough. They weren’t less than the Nephites or the Jews at Jerusalem because Christ didn’t come personally to minister to them. The Holy Ghost’s witness is as real as Christ’s personal witness.
Behold, because of their belief in me, saith the Father, and because of the unbelief of you, O house of Israel, in the latter day shall the truth come unto the Gentiles, that the fullness of these things shall be made known unto them.”3 Nephi 16:7
Roles reverse in latter-days. The Jews had the truth in ancient days, but rejected it when the Savior came to them. In modern times, Christ says the Gentiles will have the truth and take it to the world. That is happening now. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has been restored through the prophet Joseph Smith in the 1800’s. It is a worldwide Church now, with living prophets leading and directing its work, which comes through the will of the Father.
But with great blessings come great responsibilities…and a warning. Jesus warns that the unbelieving of the Gentiles will be cursed. After He gives them a land of promise, if they don’t live up to their blessings and worship Christ, the God of this land, His protections will stop.
And thus commandeth the Father that I should say unto you: At that day when the Gentiles shall sin against my gospel, and shall reject the fullness of my gospel, and shall be lifted up in the pride of their hearts above all nations, and above all the people of the whole earth, and shall be filled with all manner of lyings, and of deceits, and of mischiefs, and all manner of hypocrisy, and murders, and priestcrafts, and whoredoms, and of secret combinations; and if they shall do all those things, and shall reject the fullness of my gospel, behold, saith the Father, I will bring the fullness of my gospel from among them.”3 Nephi 16:10
Sadly, I see this happening today. God’s blessings only come when we are humble and repentant. So many good people are fighting right now to uphold a certain leader in this country, and so many good people are fighting to vote him out come November on the opposite side. I definitely have strong political opinions at the moment, but what the Spirit whispers to me over and over lately is that no one party or man will save our nation. Only individual humility and repentance can save a nation from destruction.
When we forget God and cast Him out of our lives (and good people do this every day when they put politics over people and slam others and make hateful, judgmental remarks), we will be left unto ourselves…which is a very weak position to be in.
I worry our country is at a breaking point because of the pride, hate, contention, and division that is coming from all sides. Unless good people from both political sides and in the middle wake up and humble themselves to Hear God again, instead of holding fast to political rhetoric (from our own leaders and friends and from foreign powers that are trolling social media as ravening wolves in sheep’s clothing), the foundations of liberty and freedom that God and our founding fathers worked so hard to establish, will keep eroding.
Christ holds out hope though, as He always does.
But if the Gentiles will repent and return unto me, saith the Father, behold they shall be numbered among my people, O house of Israel.”3 Nephi 16:13
This turning around starts at an individual level, before it can work its way up to community and national levels. We must worry about ourselves first. We must ask ourselves the hard questions: Lord, is it I?
Am I lifted up in pride?
Am I standing for the wrong cause?
Am I putting others down?
Am I sinning in some way, that is blocking me from receiving personal revelation?
It’s so, so easy to point the finger of judgment at others. But that does not help unite or build the kingdom of God. The first step in doing that is working on ourselves, through repentance and trusting in the Atonement of Jesus Christ to transform us into new creatures, ones that yearn to do the will of God. Ones that will love our neighbors.
Jesus ends this chapter by quoting Isaiah, saying his words will be fulfilled.
Break forth into joy, sing together, ye waste places of Jerusalem; for the Lord hath comforted his people, he hath redeemed Jerusalem.
The Lord hath made bare his holy arm in the eyes of all the nations; and all the ends of the earth shall see the salvation of God.”3 Nephi 16:19-20
He is our true hope. He is our salvation, not any man, political party, or cause here on earth. Only Christ can save, and He has shown us the way to come to Him: repentance, faith on His name, baptism, having the Holy Ghost to lead us and temper our emotions and actions. Let us not point the finger of blame at others, but work on ourselves, so that we are prepared to welcome our Savior when He comes again. Because He will.