3 Nephi, Chapter 19

Who would you invite to meet the Savior?

If I knew that Jesus was coming tomorrow, what would I do today?  This chapter is about the second day of the Savior’s visit.  The Nephites who had been there during the first day, knew he was coming on the second day.  “And now it came to pass that when Jesus had ascended into heaven, the multitude did disperse, and every man did take his wife and his children and did return to his own home (v. 1).  And it was noised abroad among the people immediately, before it was yet dark, that the multitude had seen Jesus, and that he had ministered unto them, and that he would also show himself on the morrow unto the multitude (v. 2).  Yea, and even all the night it was noised abroad concerning Jesus; and insomuch did they send forth unto the people that there were many, yea, an exceedingly great number, did labor exceedingly all that night, that they might be on the morrow in the place where Jesus should show himself unto the multitude (v. 3).”  The Nephites went home telling all that they could that they had seen the Savior and that he would return the next day.  Many worked hard to prepare themselves to be there the next day.  I am sure that if I had been there, I would have done my best to let others know what I had seen and that they could see the Savior also.  There are many things that I do daily, that I would not bother to do.  I think most of all, I would want to prepare my family for His visit, so that we could experience it together.

Who were the Nephite apostles?

The First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles lead the church today.  They share their amazing testimonies, teach gospel principles, and give us the word of God as it pertains to us today.  They are awesome men with strong and firm testimonies in the Gospel, who love Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, as well as all of the members of the church.  They have stewardship over all of us and truly act as the mouth-piece for God on the earth today.

“And it came to pass that on the morrow, when the multitude was gathered together, behold, Nephi and his brother whom he had raised from the dead, whose name was Timothy, and also his son, whose name was Jonas, and also Mathoni, and Mathonihah, his brother, and Kumen, and Kumenonhi, and Jeremiah, and Shemnon, and Jonas, and Zedekiah, and Isaiah—now these were the names of the disciples whom Jesus had chosen—and it came to pass that they went forth and stood in the midst of the multitude (v. 4).”  These were the apostles for the Nephites.  They were called directly by the Savior, and they did many things to bless the Nephite people.  They separated the people into twelve groups that they would teach (v. 5). They taught the people how they should pray and ministered to the people (v. 6-7). They taught the people exactly what the Savior had taught them and prayed again, this time praying for the Holy Ghost to be given to them (v. 8-9).   They led the people to the water’s edge (v. 10).  Nephi was baptized, followed by the rest of the twelve apostles and they each received the gift of the Holy Ghost (v. 11-13).  Then the Nephites witnessed angels come and ministered to the apostles (v. 14).

What did Jesus teach the Nephites about prayer?

When the Savior appeared to the Nephites on the second day, the first thing he did was command them that they should pray (v. 15-16).  “And it came to pass that when they had all knelt down upon the earth, he commanded his disciples that they should pray (v. 17).”  The Savior taught the Nephites how to have more effective prayers.

“And behold, they began to pray; and they did pray unto Jesus, calling him their Lord and their God (v. 18 ).  And it came to pass that Jesus departed out of the midst of them, and went a little way off from them and bowed himself to the earth, and he said (v. 19):  Father, I thank thee that thou hast given the Holy Ghost unto these whom I have chosen; and it is because of their belief in me that I have chosen them out of the world (v. 20).  Father, I pray thee that thou wilt give the Holy Ghost unto all them that shall believe in their words (v. 21).  Father, thou hast given them the Holy Ghost because they believe in me; and thou seest that they believe in me because thou hearest them, and they pray unto me; and they pray unto me because I am with them (v. 22).”  Jesus went away from the multitude to pray to Heavenly Father.  When appropriate to pray in a group, we should pray in a group.  However, the Savior teaches us by His example, the importance of praying in secret.  Jesus asked Heavenly Father to give the gift of the Holy Ghost to all those who believed the words of the Apostles and believed in Him.  Without a belief in the Savior and faith in the spirit, we cannot truly receive the Holy Ghost.  If we want to feel the love and support of God and Jesus Christ, then we need to be constantly asking for the spirit to be with us.

“And now Father, I pray unto thee for them, and also for all those who shall believe on their words, that they may believe in me, that I may be in them as thou, Father, art in me, that we may be one (v. 23).  And it came to pass that when Jesus had thus prayed unto the Father, he came unto his disciples, and behold, they did still continue, without ceasing, to pray unto him; and they did not multiply many words, for it was given unto them what they should pray, and they were filled with desire (v. 24).  And it came to pass that Jesus blessed them as they did pray unto him; and his countenance did smile upon them, and the light of his countenance did shine upon them, and behold they were as white as the countenance and also the garments of Jesus; and behold the whiteness thereof did exceed all the whiteness, yea, even there could be nothing upon earth so white as the whiteness thereof (v. 25).  And Jesus said unto them: Pray on; nevertheless they did not cease to pray (v. 26).”  Jesus prayed that in addition to having the Holy Ghost, that He, Christ, would be in them and be one with them.  As the multitude were praying, Jesus smiled at them and the light of his countenance shone upon them.  I can imagine Heavenly Father smiling as I pray to Him.  I often picture Him smiling when my daughter says prayers to Him, because of the words she chooses and the things that a child is grateful for and asks for.  I know that He is happy when we do what He has asked, because I can feel it as I pray.

“And he turned from them again, and went a little way off and bowed himself to the earth; and he prayed again unto the Father, saying (v. 27):  Father, I thank thee that thou hast purified those whom I have chosen, because of their faith, and I pray for them, and also for them who shall believe on their words, that they may be purified in me, through faith on their words, even as they are purified in me (v. 28 ).  Father, I pray not for the world, but for those whom thou hast given me out of the world, because of their faith, that they may be purified in me, that I may be in them as thou, Father, art in me, that we may be one, that I may be glorified in them (v. 29).  And when Jesus had spoken these words he came again unto his disciples; and behold they did pray steadfastly, without ceasing, unto him; and he did smile upon them again; and behold they were white, even as Jesus (v. 30).”  The Savior asked for those who believe on the words of the apostles, that they would be purified through there faith.  Then when He returned to the disciples and saw that they were still praying just as He had told them to do, He smiled again.

“And it came to pass that he went again a little way off and prayed unto the Father (v. 31); And tongue cannot speak the words which he prayed, neither can be written by man the words which he prayed (v. 32).  And the multitude did hear and do bear record; and their hearts were open and they did understand in their hearts the words which he prayed (v. 33).  Nevertheless, so great and marvelous were the words which he prayed that they cannot be written, neither can they be uttered by man (v. 34).”  The spirit opened the hearts of the multitude so that they would be able to understand the words of the Savior’s prayer.  This prayer was so sacred, that no one would be able to record what was said.

What blessings can come to us as a result of sincere, faithful prayer?

Faith is a Sunrise

“And it came to pass that when Jesus had made an end of praying he came again to the disciples, and said unto them: So great faith have I never seen among all the Jews; wherefore I could not show unto them so great miracles, because of their unbelief (v. 35).  Verily I say unto you, there are none of them that have seen so great things as ye have seen; neither have they heard so great things as ye have heard (v. 36).”

Because these Nephites prayed with such sincerity and faith, they were able to witness miracles even greater than those that the Jews could witness.  We can experience miracles in our lives as well, if we will be truly sincere in our own prayers.  We need to reflect on our communications with our Father in Heaven and if they are not prayers of faith and sincerity, then we need to see what we should change.  I hope to witness miracles in my own life because of the amount of faith that I can have and show towards my Father in Heaven.

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About My Scripture Study Buddy

I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I love the scriptures, but I am not a scriptorian. I've been told that I'm too "deep" for some, but if you are willing, I'd love to have others join me in my quest for a greater understanding of the gospel. Please feel free to leave me comments and hopefully we can help each other to learn.
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