Mormon writes to his son again to let him know he’s still alive. He’s just survived a sore battle where great men were lost. He fears that all is lost for his people “for they do not repent, and Satan stirreth them up continually to anger one with another.” (3)
The people’s anger and hardness of heart has made them “lost their love, one towards another; and they thirst after blood and revenge continually.” (5)
There is much anger and hard hearts today, especially on social media where people can hide behind anonymity a tiny bit. I see people figuratively thirsting after each other’s blood on the vitriolic comments left on newspaper articles or social media posts. They have no love for anyone who is not like-minded (or narrow-minded, like them). People who are fair minded are willing to listen to others without putting them down. That doesn’t mean we need to believe or accept what others say, but we don’t have to take our figurative swords out and cut them down in cruel ways.
How do you act online to others you disagree with?
I think we all must do a self-check to see if where our priorities are. Do we love our fellowmen (ALL of them)? Or do we only tolerate those who agree exactly with our worldviews?
I think if we’re honest, all of us will find we lack in some way. All of us will find that we could do better, that we have attitudes to repent of.
And if we think we have nothing to repent of, we might be more lost than the wicked Nephites in Mormon and Moroni’s days. We always have something we are lacking. None of us is perfect yet, and none of us will ever be without our Savior. And I can assure you that Jesus is more concerned with people’s hearts than their politics.
Though his efforts to change the people’s hearts have been in vain so far, Mormon still urges his son to stay hopeful and keep trying, to not stop teaching the people so that they don’t come under condemnation for doing nothing.
When we do nothing, we actually contribute to Satan’s side, “for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God.” (6)
How important is hope in God’s light?
God’s light is real. It is available to all! It gives life to all things. It has the power to soften the sting of the deepest wound. It can be a healing balm for the loneliness and sickness of our souls. In the furrows of despair, it can plant the seeds of a brighter hope. It can enlighten the deepest valleys of sorrows. It can illuminate the path before us and lead us through the darkest night into the promise of a new dawn.”Dieter F. Uchtdorf, The Hope of God’s Light, Ensign, May 2013
Mormon and Moroni lived in the darkest of days, yet their hope in Christ kept them moving forward in righteousness, even though they acted alone.
Spiritual light rarely comes to those who merely sit in darkness waiting for someone to flip a switch. It takes an act of faith to open our eyes to the Light of Christ. Spiritual light cannot be discerned by carnal eyes.ibid, Uchtdorf
Though the world around them was dismal, Mormon and Moroni looked forward into eternity and knew they could do whatever God required of them.
We don’t have to wait to cross the finish line to receive God’s blessings. In fact, the heavens begin to part and the blessings of heaven begin to distill upon us with the very first steps we take toward the light.”Ibid, Uchtdorf
Mormon and Moroni never faltered in their faith and hope in Christ. And that helped them see light in the midst of utter darkness.
Even after the darkest night, the Savior of the world will lead you to a gradual, sweet, and bright dawn that will assuredly rise within you.”ibid, Uchtdorf
Now Mormon writes of heartbreaking circumstances. Many of their people were taken prisoner from “the tower of Sherrizah.” (7) The Lamanites kill the men “and feed the women upon the flesh of their husbands, and the children upon the flesh of their fathers; and no water, save a little, do they give unto them.” (8) This shows how barbaric both sides have become.
But Mormon accuses his people of even worse crimes:
And notwithstanding this great abomination of the Lamanites, it doth not exceed that of our people in Moriantum. For behold, many of the daughters of the Lamanites have they taken prisoners; and after depriving them of that which was most dear and precious above all things, which is chastity and virtue—
And after they had done this thing, they did murder them in a most cruel manner, torturing their bodies even unto death; and after they have done this, they devour their flesh like unto wild beasts, because of the hardness of their hearts, and they do it for a token of bravery.”Moroni 9:9-10
Mormon asks his son: “How can we expect that God will stay his hand in judgment against us? (14)
Wo unto this people. Come out in judgment, O God, and hide their sins, and wickedness, and abominations from before thy face!”Moroni 9:15
Mormon condemns the actions of his people further by showing how they won’t take care of their widows and children left behind from this war, that they actually steal their food to feed their armies and leave them to wander and perish. (16)
O the depravity of my people! They are without order and without mercy. Behold, I am but a man, and I have but the strength of a man, and I cannot any longer enforce my commands.”Moroni 9:18
What kind or order do we have in our own life?
Do we show mercy?
I think we will never regret erring on the side of mercy with any of God’s children.
And they have become strong in their perversions; and they are alike brutal, sparing none, neither old nor young; and they delight in everything save that which is good; and the suffering of our women and our children upon all the face of the land doth exceed everything; yea, tongue cannot tell, neither can it be written.”Moroni 9:19
Times are dire. Satan has complete hold on their hearts. Mormon says they “are without principle, and past feeling;” (20)
We must hold true to principles God has given us. Whenever we lie or use any other Satanic tactic to justify a good end, we are without principle. Political leaders do this all the time, and we cannot condone it, no matter if they are of our party or not. When people act without principle, it is a slippery road they are on, and they can drag us down it very easily. Stand for principles.
Mormon tells Moroni he cannot recommend his people to God, but he can “recommend thee unto God, and I trust in Christ that thou wilt be saved; and I pray unto God that he will spare thy life, to witness the return of his people unto him, or their utter destruction; for I know that they must perish except they repent and return unto him. (22) And if they perish it will be like unto the Jaredites, because of the willfulness of their hearts, seeking for blood and revenge.” (23)
Mormon trusts that he will see Moroni again because he has to deliver up the sacred records unto him. Then he leaves him with his testimony.
My son, be faithful unto Christ; and may not the things which I have written grieve thee, to weigh thee down unto death; but may Christ lift thee up, and may his sufferings and death, and the showing of his body unto our fathers, and his mercy and long-suffering, and the hope of his glory and of eternal life, rest in your mind forever.”Moroni 9:25
When we are weighed down by the darkness around us, remember these words, and let our knowledge of Christ lift us out of darkness and feel joy.