Study helps: President Dieter F Uchtdorf – Bearers of Heavenly Light

From http://www.lds.org:

Invite members to search President Uchtdorf’s message and identify how the presence or absence of divine light can affect our lives. You could invite members to study some of the scriptures that President Uchtdorf references and identify truths related to spiritual light. What does the metaphor about the eclipse teach us about the role of agency in seeking spiritual light? What can we do to share Jesus Christ’s divine light with others, especially with our families and with “our youth, who are seeking light”?

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Darkness reduces our ability to see clearly. It dims our vision of that which was at one time plain and clear. When we are in darkness, we are more likely to make poor choices because we cannot see dangers in our path. When we are in darkness, we are more likely to lose hope because we cannot see the peace and joy that await us if we just keep pressing forward.

Were you afraid of the dark as a child? Are you still afraid of the dark? It can be unsettling being in the dark. Objects that are familiar in the light became strange, even frightening, in the dark. Spike Milligan wrote a poem about the fear that can come with darkness:

Things that go ‘bump’ in the night

Should not really give one a fright.

It’s the hole in each ear

That lets in the fear,

That, and the absence of light!

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Tasks that are easy in the light can also become very difficult in darkness. When our children were young I once get up early for work and decided to get dressed in the dark so that wife and children would not be disturbed. I drove through the dark streets to the office and it was only in the bright glare of the office fluorescent lights that I discovered that in the darkness I had put on my ‘decorating’ shirt which was liberally covered with gloss paint!

How can we dispel darkness?

Light, on the other hand, allows us to see things as they really are. It allows us to discern between truth and error, between the vital and the trivial. When we are in the light, we can make righteous choices based on true principles. When we are in the light, we have “a perfect brightness of hope” because we can see our mortal trials from an eternal perspective.

As our light, the Lord shows us the path, gives us comfort as we walk along it and illuminates the obstacles in our way. When we walk in His light, we do not stumble. Enemies are not able to hide in the dark and catch us by surprise.

“In this age we are blessed daily by electrical light. It takes a power failure to remind us how much we take that blessing for granted. As Jesus told his followers in the above passage, however, there is never a spiritual power failure when the gospel ‘casts away the veil of unbelief’ and dispels ‘the cloud of darkness,’ thus producing an endless daytime of understanding and rejoicing. The gospel can ‘light up [our] minds,’ so that we can function as illuminated individuals-without interruption. (See Alma 19:6.)” (Elder Neal A Maxwell, A Wonderful Flood of Light [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1990], 53.)

“We can all find ourselves in places of darkness from time to time. We may wander into dark, spiritual caverns when we make foolish choices, admit harmful influences into our lives, or turn away from the light of the gospel to embrace the world just a little longer. It may seem harmless at first—just a little exploring, that’s all. Before we know it, we become separated from the light and left in darkness alone. Why do we remain in darkness when such rescuing light awaits us? Let us bask in the warm and illuminating light provided by the gospel of Jesus Christ. Let the Savior’s kindly light lead us one step at a time. Let covenants and commandments keep us safe as we follow the gospel pathway to our heavenly home”. (Virginia U Jensen, General Conference, October 2000.)

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2 Nephi 31:20

‘Mortal life is a period of testing where we will be proven to see if we will do all things that the Lord our God shall command us. [See  Abraham 3:25 This will require unwavering faith in Christ even in times of great difficulty. It will require that we press forward with steadfast faith in Christ, being led by the Spirit and trusting that God will provide for our needs.[See  1 Nephi 4:6–7  2 Nephi 31:20] ‘(Ulisses Soares, General Conference, April 2017)

John 8:12

‘At night, two millennia ago, the celebration of the great Feast of Tabernacles featured illuminated candelabra in the courtyard of the temple at Jerusalem. Fresh from that experience the Master Teacher went on to declare that He was the Light of the world, that His followers, regardless of time or season, need never walk in darkness (see John 8:12).

“In this age we are blessed daily by electrical light. It takes a power failure to remind us how much we take that blessing for granted. As Jesus told his followers in the above passage, however, there is never a spiritual power failure when the gospel ‘casts away the veil of unbelief’ and dispels ‘the cloud of darkness,’ thus producing an endless daytime of understanding and rejoicing. The gospel can ‘light up [our] minds,’ so that we can function as illuminated individuals-without interruption. (See Alma 19:6.)” ‘ (Neal A Maxwell, A Wonderful Flood of Light [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1990], 53.)

D&C 88:12

‘We believe there is a spiritual influence that emanates from the presence of God to fill the immensity of space. (See  D&C 88:12 All men share an inheritance of divine light. God operates among his children in all nations, and those who seek God are entitled to further light and knowledge, regardless of their race, nationality, or cultural traditions.’ {Howard W Hunter, General Conference, October 1991)

D&C 84:45

‘Knowing what you may or may not know, what would you think of an eight-year camping trip in the wilderness—no trips to town, no light, not even a fire? This describes the experience Father Lehi and his family had when they were told by the Lord to leave Jerusalem. I’ll bet there was some murmuring in the camp—and not a lot of volunteers! There were undoubtedly young women like you on this marathon trip.

The Lord warned them not to make any fires. Then He taught them, “I will … be your light in the wilderness; and I will prepare the way before you, if … ye shall keep my commandments; … ye shall be led towards the promised land; and ye shall know that it is by me that ye are led”  1 Ne. 17:13

You all must have promised lands that you would like to go to, and you can have your own light in that wilderness that challenges young people today. This light comes all wrapped up in love, the Lord’s love for every one of His children, and especially for young people. The Lord knows that you face challenges and temptations, and He provides the light that brightens your hearts, your minds, and your spirits. He has said that His word is truth and truth is light and light is the Spirit of Jesus Christ (see  D&C 84:45′ (Sharon G Larsen, General Conference, April 1999)

D&C 84:46

‘That means that every soul who walks the earth, wherever he lives, in whatever nation he may have been born, no matter whether he be in riches or in poverty, had at birth an endowment of that first light which is called the Light of Christ, the Spirit of Truth, or the Spirit of God-that universal light of intelligence with which every soul is blessed.’ (The Teachings of Harold B. Lee, edited by Clyde J. Williams [Salt Lake City: Bookcraft, 1996], 99.)

D&C 88:40

‘Every man who possesses true intelligence will come unto God and live, for there can be no wickedness associated with intelligence… Pure intelligence is an attribute of God which will create in the heart of man a desire to come to the perfect knowledge of truth. He will therefore seek wisdom and knowledge, that he may have power; but all his efforts to know will be put forth to obtain glory, honor, and eternal life.

Thus he will eventually come to be like God and obtain a fulness of glory in the celestial kingdom because he is intelligent.’ (JoseThe Way to Perfection [Salt Lake City: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1949], 231.)

D&C 88:67

‘As we look with love and gratitude to God, as we serve him with an eye single to his glory, there goes from us the darkness of sin, the darkness of selfishness, the darkness of pride. There will come an increased love for our Eternal Father and for his Beloved Son, our Savior and our Redeemer. There will come a greater sense of service toward our fellowmen, less of thinking of self and more of reaching out to others.’ (Gordon B Hinckley, “And the Greatest of These Is Love,” Ensign, Mar. 1984, 5)

3 Nephi 18:24

“Faith permits us to ‘hold up [our] light that it may shine unto the world,’ while remembering that Jesus said, ‘I am the light which ye shall hold up’ (3 Nephi 18:24). As we both testify of Him and strive to replicate His way of life in our own, we are reverently and respectfully holding Him up to proper human view.” (Neal A Maxwell, Lord, Increase Our Faith, p. 20)

Matthew 5:16

‘Our lives should be examples of goodness and virtue as we try to emulate His example to the world. Good works by each of us can do credit both to the Savior and His Church. As you are engaged in doing good, being honorable and upright men and women, the Light of Christ will be reflected by your lives.’ (L Tom Perry, General Conference, October 2011)

1 John 1:7

‘Familiarity with darkness can eventually erode our sensitivity until we choose darkness rather than light. Let us seek the light and keep our own lights shining, thus inviting the Spirit of the Lord into our lives, our homes, and the lives of our children and neighbors.’ (Joseph B Wirthlin, Finding Peace in Our Lives [Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1995], 83-84.)

Matthew 5:14

‘If we as a people will walk with integrity, will be honest and moral in our actions, will put into our lives the simple and basic and wonderful principle of the Golden Rule, others will be led to inquire and learn. We shall become as a city set upon a hill whose light cannot be hid. (See  Matt. 5:14 We shall witness an ever-growing fulfillment of the promise of Isaiah: “And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the God of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths.”  Isa. 2:3′ (Gordon B Hinckley, General Conference, April 1982)

Alma 19:6

“In one verse, Alma 19:6, the word light occurs six times, in every one of the familiar senses in which it meets us in the Nag Hammadi texts and in the Dead Sea Scrolls: (quotes Alma 19:6)

“Mohlin’s book on the Dead Sea Scrolls, Die Söhne des Lichtes, deals extensively with the images of light and darkness; the images are so constant that the Dead Sea Scrolls people are today called the ‘Sons of Light.’ The title to the second of the great scrolls is in fact The War of the Sons of Light with the Sons of Darkness. It is exactly the same light and darkness of which Alma speaks, in the same sense, when talking about King Lamoni, who was overcome in this struggle.” (Hugh Nibley, Temple And Cosmos, p. 237)

 

 

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