To begin with, the true believer, notwithstanding his weaknesses, is settled in his basic spirituality. He is settled, to use another of Alma's phrases, in his "views of Christ" (Alma 27:28), so his views of everything else are put in that precious perspective.
There are, of course, other kinds of believers who are not "true believers." In the parable of the seeds, one outcome was when the seed had no root, typifying those who "for a while believe" but who "in time of temptation fall away" (Luke 8:13). Alma warned us (in his own seed analogy) about the withering effect when the "heat of the sun cometh and scorcheth" the undernourished tree of shallow root (Alma 32). Other observations of Jesus add the insight about how tribulation and persecution cause the weak to be offended and to fall away (Matt. 13:6, 21).
Most of us here have had the sad experience of seeing some wither because they cannot stand the heat. They are not likely to acknowledge that as the real reason for their failures but will conveniently choose an issue over which they can become offended. Another dynamic operates, too. In racing marathons, one does not see the dropouts make fun of those who continue; failed runners actually cheer on those who continue the race, wishing they were still in it. Not so with the marathon of discipleship in which some dropouts then make fun of the spiritual enterprise of which they were so recently a part!
Sunday, January 26, 2014
Today's Maxwell Quote
From this talk: