Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Care for the One

My husband and I have been reading in the Book of Mormon about when Christ came to visit the people of the Americas. One thing that seems to stick out to me today is how individualized His attention was, and how concerned He was that everyone experience for themselves.
13 And it came to pass that the Lord spake unto them saying:
14 Arise and come forth unto me, that ye may thrust your hands into my side, and also that ye may feel the prints of the nails in my hands and in my feet, that ye may know that I am the God of Israel, and the God of the whole earth, and have been slain for the sins of the world.
15 And it came to pass that the multitude went forth, and thrust their hands into his side, and did feel the prints of the nails in his hands and in his feet; and this they did do, going forth one by one until they had all gone forth, and did see with their eyes and did feel with their hands, and did know of a surety and did bear record, that it was he, of whom it was written by the prophets, that should come.
16 And when they had all gone forth and had witnessed for themselves, they did cry out with one accord, saying:
17 Hosanna! Blessed be the name of the Most High God! And they did fall down at the feet of Jesus, and did worship him. (3 Nephi 11:13-17)
Christ wanted everyone to see the wounds that were made in Him on their behalf. When they saw them, the sufferings of Christ for their sins became a very real thing, worthy of worship. These days I try to use the sacrament to make Christ’s sufferings real to me.

Christ also wanted the people to experience His healing power.
7 Have ye any that are sick among you? Bring them hither. Have ye any that are lame, or blind, or halt, or maimed, or leprous, or that are withered, or that are deaf, or that are afflicted in any manner? Bring them hither and I will heal them, for I have compassion upon you; my bowels are filled with mercy.
8 For I perceive that ye desire that I should show unto you what I have done unto your brethren at Jerusalem, for I see that your faith is sufficient that I should heal you.
9 And it came to pass that when he had thus spoken, all the multitude, with one accord, did go forth with their sick and their afflicted, and their lame, and with their blind, and with their dumb, and with all them that were afflicted in any manner; and he did heal them every one as they were brought forth unto him. (3 Nephi 17:7-9)
I think it is neat that Christ healed those who came to Him, and He did it one by one. Today we are still invited to come unto Christ and promised that He can heal our hearts. Priesthood power is on the earth today and we can be healed of our sickness. I have experienced these things myself and they are real.

Christ also gave individual attention to children.
And when he had said these words, he wept, and the multitude bare record of it, and he took their little children, one by one, and blessed them, and prayed unto the Father for them. (3 Nephi 17:21)
I find this so neat that Christ would take each child and bless each one and pray for each one. Think of the anticipation of waiting for that experience. I wonder, if I had been one of those children, what would Christ said when He blessed me? What would He have prayed for me? I’m sure it would have been great, because of what it says earlier when he was praying for the whole multitude.
15 And when he had said these words, he himself also knelt upon the earth; and behold he prayed unto the Father, and the things which he prayed cannot be written, and the multitude did bear record who heard him.
16 And after this manner do they bear record: The eye hath never seen, neither hath the ear heard, before, so great and marvelous things as we saw and heard Jesus speak unto the Father;
17 And no tongue can speak, neither can there be written by any man, neither can the hearts of men conceive so great and marvelous things as we both saw and heard Jesus speak; and no one can conceive of the joy which filled our souls at the time we heard him pray for us unto the Father. (3 Nephi 17:15-17)
I would love to know what He prayed.

All this individual attention that Christ gave to the people shows us that salvation is about the one, and that we are saved from our sins one by one, that we are taught one by one. We receive ordinances one by one so that we know that the covenants we make are between us and God.