2019 Study Summary 36: Be Ye Reconciled to God
2 Corinthians 1–7
“Be Ye Reconciled to God”
God comforts and cares for His saints—The saints are sealed and given assurance by the Spirit in their hearts.
Saints should love and forgive one another—They always triumph in Christ.
The gospel surpasses the law of Moses—Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.
Gospel light shines on the saints—Mortal trials are nothing as contrasted with eternal glory.
Saints walk by faith and seek tabernacles of immortal glory——Gospel reconciles man to God—His ministers carry the word of reconciliation to the world.
Now is the day of salvation—God’s ministers must walk uprightly and bear all things—Saints should not be unequally yoked with unbelievers.
Godly sorrow for sin leads to repentance—The sorrow of the world worketh death.
How does recognizing God help us recognize ourselves?
Being reconciled to God requires us to recognize Him and what He does for us. We must also recognize ourselves and what we can do for Him. The concept of being chosen to represent God is supported by in the scriptures. In the November supplement material, we will more closely examine the concept. Both Jews and Latter-day Saints consider the House of Israel as chosen. Some of the most important characteristics of reconciliation are mercy and forgiveness.
How do I become chosen?
“How odd of God, to choose the Jews.” W.N. Ewer, who wrote this jingle, could not understand why Israel is God’s Chosen People. Moses, in Deuteronomy 7:7–8, explains it thus: “The Lord did not set His love upon you because you were more in number than any people . . . but because the Lord loved you, and because He would keep the oath which He had sworn to your fathers. The rabbis insist that Israel was elected because it voluntarily accepted the Torah whereas other nations would not. Mercy and forgiveness, says the Talmud, are distinguishing characteristics of Abraham and his seed, and these characteristics motivated God to choose Israel as His people.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How does forgiving and being forgiven affect health?
The value of forgiving and being forgiven affects the entire health of a person. The Lord required us to forgive because He forgives us. “Asaph was a religious doctor and tried to harmonize science and religion. He believed that since many diseases came as punishments for sins, a patient could be cured only by praying hard, asking forgiveness and giving charity, because God was the true healer, only God could give doctors the power to use properly all the medicine they had learnt. He also taught that forbidden food was a cause of disease, while kosher food prevented it.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
How am I forgiven, and forgive, yet I still remember?
There is a mistaken idea that if one truly repents and truly forgives that he will forget. The scriptural verses about remembrance indicate that the Lord is the one who will forget our mistakes. Apparently, we need to have memory, because it is from our memory of good and bad that we learn. As we remember our sins and the sins of our forefathers, we can prevent ourselves from repeating the same mistakes. “But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more.” (Jeremiah 31:33-34)
How do reconciliation and remembering connect?
There is great value in being reconciled with God through the process of remembering. It leads us to seek forgiveness and imbues us a sense of forgiving. “It is natural for someone who has endured a terrible disaster to want to bury his painful memories along with the dead and forget the past. But the Jews, being only a tiny minority in the world and having a long history of persecution, cannot afford to forget that Nazism brutally murdered six million of their people. Thus in 1953 the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, established Yad Vashem, the Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Authority, to perpetuate their memory.” “. . . the old-fashioned candle will continue to symbolize for Jews the spirit of God, the light of the Torah, the conclusion of the Sabbath and the memory of those who have passed away.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)
Who carries the yoke of troublesome memories?
There is a Mosaic law that relates to a yoke of unlike animals. he unfairness of plowing with a donkey and an ox is clearly visible when looking at the lesser creature. “Thou shalt not plow with an ox and an ass together.” (Deuteronomy 22:10) Consider that the Lord wants to relieve us of the unfairness in life. He is saying, in effect, “I am carrying the burden; take advantage of it.” In learning this principle, following Him and giving our burdens to Him (He has paid for them already), we cleanse our inner selves and are able to better serve Him. “Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.” (Psalms 55:22) The prophet Isaiah taught us that the Lord would relieve us from the yoke of our burdens. “For thou hast broken the yoke of his burden . . .” (Isaiah 9:4) In examining the little information we have of Jesus’ life, we see how privately and personally He takes all burdens upon Himself.
How does remembering also unite a people?
“The rabbis of that generation enacted new laws whose purpose was to fulfill the biblical verse, “If I forget thee, O Jerusalem . . . “ (Psalm 137). “They decreed that a corner of every house, a part of every meal, even some of every woman’s jewelry, be set aside — in memory of the Temple. Special prayers were formulated to express the yearning of the people to return to Zion and to worship once again in the Temple of God. Instrumental music was banned from the synagogue service, a glass was broken at every wedding, and the words. Next year in Jerusalem were recited on Passover and at the end of the Day of Atonement — all in memory of the Temple. Most historians believe that these prayers, customs, and hopes helped to unite the Jewish people and kept alive the hope of returning to Zion, a hope fulfilled in our days.” (Encyclopedia Judaica Jr.)