Thursday, November 20, 2014

Lessons Learned from the New Testament

Several of you expressed interest in reading the talk I gave in church this past Sunday. Each week church members are asked to speak on various topics and this past week I spoke on Lessons Learned from the New Testament. I warn you, it's long, but worth it in my opinion! I attached my sources through links. Let me know in the comments what you think!! 

Good morning!

I’ve been given an interesting topic, probably one of the best ones I’ve ever been asked to speak on! I loooove to read. I’ve been reading books every day since I was a little girl. Today I’d like to speak to y’all about a very special book in the Bible. The New Testament.


I found 50 lessons we can learn from the New Testament. Can you believe that… 50!! And I’m sure there are way more, but since I am NO scriptorian, we will stick with 50. Instead of reciting each scripture to you, I’d like to refer you to the New Testament scripture mastery, there you will find all the scriptures I used for this talk. 

In Matthew, we learn we are the light of the world and are advised to let our light so shine that others will see our good works and glorify our Father in heaven. We are warned to only serve one master, for we cannot love one without hating the other, so we must love and serve only God. We learn that we can gain a testimony that Jesus Christ is the savior of the world through the Holy Ghost who will witness the truth of all things. We learn our families can be together forever through the keys of the kingdom of heaven, bound both on earth and in heaven. We learn to be charitable, we are told in Matthew Chapter 25 Verse 40 that “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least (LEAST) of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me”.

In Luke, we learn we can be resurrected just like Jesus Christ. In John, we learn we need to be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ to be cleansed of our sins and made right through the Atonement. We learn that we can discern between good and evil. We can know God’s will by knowing His doctrine.  Jesus Christ speaks of other sheep He must bring into the fold (hey! And we’re the other sheep!!), this prophesizes of the Book of Mormon and the Restoration of the Gospel that was to come.  Jesus Christ teaches us, “if ye love me, keep my commandments.”  In John we are taught there is eternal life, that through accepting Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior we have a life of eternal happiness.

In Acts, we can learn about the Godhead, that Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ are two separate beings. “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of man standing on the right hand of God.”

Romans teaches us to be not ashamed of the Gospel of Jesus Christ!!

1 Corinthians shows us that God will help us escape temptation and never give us more than we are able to handle. We learn that Jesus Christ overcame the fall of Adam and Eve, and I quote “in Christ shall all be made alive”. We also learn about baptisms for the dead for those unable to learn of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in this life are given the opportunity to hear the Gospel and be baptized by proxy in our temples. In 1st Corinthians, we also learn about the plan of happiness.
In Ephesians we learn that prophets, apostles, teachers, and pastors were given for the perfecting of the saints and for the edifying of the body of Christ.
In 2nd Thessalonians we are warned to not be shaken in our mind, nor troubled in our believe in Jesus Christ. We are also warned to let no man deceive us into believing the coming of the Savior will not come.
In 2nd Timothy we are warned of perilous times, times when men shall love pleasures more than God. We learn that scriptures are given through inspiration. 
Hebrews shows the priesthood being conferred upon Aaron.
James Chapter 1 vs. 5-6, “If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him. But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed”. When in doubt, ask God! James also teaches that faith without works is dead, and advises us to show our faith in God through our good works.

FINALLY,
Revelations prophesies of the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ and warns us that through these scriptures we shall be judged.

WHEW, that’s a lot to learn in one set of scriptures!!!

There’s even MORE to learn from the parables of Jesus Christ:

A parable, therefore, is a simple story in which the narrator compares the common experiences of his listeners to some divine truth.
Frank F. Judd in an Ensign article talked about the two types of parables. Parables of instruction, parables of rebuke.
He said, “Parables of instruction included such commonplace people and objects as a sower, an empty house, a great supper, a lost coin, a steward, a servant, laborers in a field, sheep and goats, as well as vines and branches. The principles taught include “faith, repentance, baptism, development of talents, forgiveness, perseverance in doing good, being a profitable steward, charity, mercy, and obedience.”
Parables of rebuke which the Savior directed toward those who had ill will for Him. The parables of the two sons, the wicked husband-men, and the marriage of the king’s son, which specifically condemn those who were conspiring against Him, are examples of this type of parable.”

I found a neat print out an LDS blogger wrote all the parables on her page and uploaded to Pinterest. I noticed that 8 of the parables were repeated in Matthew, Mark, and Luke. Because of General Conference and how Gospel principles are repeated often I felt like these parables must be the most important! Parables which then link up with scripture mastery means double importance!

Parable 1, The Lamp under a Bushel. We are taught to “let our light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your father which is in heaven”.
Sound familiar? 
LINK THIS TO scripture mastery saying do not be ashamed of the gospel and to be a light unto the world.

Parable 2, New Wine into Old Wineskins. Through this parable of keeping new wine in new bottles, or else the new wine burst the old bottles we learn to let go of our past transgressions. We can’t move forward if we continue to hang onto our past sins and experiences. We become new when baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.
LINK THIS TO scriptures mastery talking about baptism!

Parable 3, Parable of the Strong Man we are taught that Jesus Christ will always have power over Satan, our lesson is that if we follow Him we will be protected.
LINK THIS TO scripture mastery in 1 Corinthians that says God will help us escape temptation.

Parable 4, Parable of the Sower. We are taught to plant our seeds, our little mustard seed of faith if you will in good ground so it can grow and bear good fruit.
LINK THIS TO scripture about doing God’s will to know his doctrine!

Parable 5, parable of the Mustard Seed, We learn that faith is as small as a mustard seed, but that it has the potential to grow into something amazing!
LINK THIS TO James faith without works is dead

Parable 6, The Wicked Husbandman, in this parable we learn that prophets are sent to us, but we keep killing the words of the prophets either through our lack of faith, doubts, or relationships with sin.
LINK THIS TO Ephesians on perfecting the saints through the words of the Prophets.

Parable 7, The Budding Fig Tree. S. Kent Brown in a BYU Speech said: “How shall we know about the approach of the end? Jesus offered one clue that is recorded in all of the sources, that of the budding fig tree. He declared:
Now learn a parable of the fig-tree—When its branches are yet tender, and it begins to put forth leaves, you know that summer is nigh at hand;
So likewise, mine elect, when they shall see all these things, they shall know that he is near, even at the doors;
But of that day, and hour, no man knoweth. 
We note with interest the image of the budding fig tree. It is an image of hope, of the promise of new growth, of renewed life after winter. Jesus’ caution, as we can also see in other passages, is that we do not know the hour of His arrival.”
LINK THIS TO 2 Timothy when perilous times shall come before the coming of Christ.

Parable 8, The Faithful Servant keep watch for nobody knows when Jesus Christ will return.
LINK TO Romans, be NOT ashamed to live and believe in the Gospel of Jesus Christ.



What can we take from all of these scripture mastery verses and parables of Jesus Christ?

All of us can know with a surety that there is a Savior of the world! What happy news this is, that there once was a man who lived a perfect life, who ministered to people, healed the sick, loved the unloveable, and most of all died for our sins and bore all experiences for us. We can take from these lessons that God loooooooves us so much He sent His only Begotten son for us to find a way back into His presence. From these lessons we can know that our sins can be wiped clean, that the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored to the earth and that having faith in it will bring us the greatest happiness in the world! The world! How beautiful is that?! 

I share these things with you in the name of Jesus Christ, 
Amen. 


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