I Will Go and Do

13 January 2008
"I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded..." (1 Nephi 3:7). How many times to we hear that in our Church? I think that we hear it all too often. Jeffrey R. Holland thinks the same when he stated this in a devotional, "I confess that I wince a little when I hear that promise quoted so casually among us" (The Will of the Father in All Things, 1989). When we say, "I will go and do...," we do not understand the magnitude of what we are saying if we say it casually. We are rather stating a fact about a principle of the Church that we think that we are living.

The question arises, do we think that Nephi understood the magnitude of what he was saying when he said this? I would say that he had a perfect knowledge of what saying that entailed and it is obvious in his actions. Nephi had a strong testimony and had strong faith in the Lord. This is evident when he went to retrieve the plates without question and when it did not work the first time, he rallied his brothers and went a second time.

Then another question arises, what about when he was commanded to kill Laban and he did not want to perform the task? I would say that the main reason why he did not want to kill Laban was because it went against what he had been taught and it did not feel right to him.

Then the question comes up, why did the Lord command Laban to be killed? Some may say that it is because Laban was wicked and he stood in the path for the righteous. I believe that this is true, but there is more to the story. Laban had two chances to be righteous. When Laman first went to him to ask for the plates, Laban said no and chased Laman out of the gates with his guards. Laban could have done the righteous thing and prayed about it to see if he should give the plates to Laman, but he did not. Then when Nephi and his brothers brought him all of their silver and gold, Laban could have gone off to pray about it again to see if it was right, but he did not. All that he wanted was the gold and silver, so he took it and kept the plates. Laban's past wickedness gave the Lord the need to kill him because God could not have his people going to the Americas without scriptures. If that had happened, his people would have forgotten him even easier and they probably would have lasted in righteousness for a generation or two.

Now that you see the reasons why Laban had to die, the questions are brought up in most minds, why did Nephi have to kill Laban and how come God did not kill Laban himself? I would argue that Nephi had to kill Laban because it would cause him to become the great person that we know him as today. This was his defining task in his life. Nephi had two choices. Number one was to follow his heart and instincts or the natural man inside of him. Number two was to follow God. We know that he chose to follow God. Since he chose to follow God, he became a great leader, he was willing to follow God in all things, and he had the Spirit with him constantly. He was also able to do the hard things, like go to war against his brothers and their people and forgive them, more easily.

We do not know how Nephi would have turned out if he had chose to follow the natural man, but I know for a surety that he would not have been the same person. Now that we know a little bit more about the magnitude of what Nephi said, we can apply it to our lives.

I personally believe that his story can be related to all the MoHos in the world. Right now, a lot of us are going through a period of growth and development, like Nephi. We also have two different choices that we can make. Number one is to follow the natural "gay" man or our instincts, attractions, and heart. Number two is to follow God, his teachings, and overcome the natural "gay" man inside of us (I do not mean get rid of the "gay" man inside of us). This is our defining task for our lives, like Nephi. We can choose either or because we have the agency to do it. What will your choice be? Will you go and do what the Lord has commanded or will you go down a different path?

Note: I would like all of you to think about this. I don't want comments defending your actions and decisions because I can really care less (I have already heard a lot of these in comments and emails and I have probably heard most of the defenses you can give me). I also don't want the comments saying that God told you to be gay, because I don't believe it and I want some actual thoughts besides those in my comments. Give me some meat, arguments, and flaws in my thoughts. I would really appreciate it if you would follow this criteria.


Scot said...

After that last paragraph, I’m curious as to what sort of response you expect. You have faith that the supernatural wants one thing; others do not. This isn’t a case where we can all work the math problem or do the experiment and get the answer. It’s an intractable problem as old as recorded history (and a reason our president is overseas at the moment). So I’m wondering what kind of argument you’d anticipate in this instance that could be constructively presented to you?

To my view, in this arena, there is no “meat” to be had. Nonetheless, there will be a fight for it :-); at least in Utah that fight isn't too extreme. I hope to be wrong here, but I just think you’re going to get the sort of emails and such that you don’t want, and then everybody is upset again and that’s no good.

One of So Many said...

So following the natural man means NOT killing people? And to follow god and be great leaders you have to kill people?

I know the intent I just play devils advocate a bit.

sam said...

This is like the gospel according to sean.

Neal said...


This question - whether we will obey or not - is really the central test of our mortal probation.

Abrahom 3:25
"And we will prove them herewith, to see if they will do ALL things whatsoever the Lord their God shall command them;"

We have numerous examples in the scriptures of those who passed or failed this test, and we can contrast them for our own benefit and enlightenment. Nephi's test, which most of us can sympathize with, was an extreme case. He was asked to take a man's life, and that made him uncomfortable. It should have! Abraham was given a similar test, but was spared at the last moment. The point in each case was that they did indeed obey the Lord. They proved themselves.

Our individual situations in life may not require us to make such dramatic demonstrations of obedience, but we are under the same obligation as Nephi or Abraham - to obey. The prophets have taught us that "obedience is the first law of Heaven". And we learn from the scriptures that even Christ had to learn obedience by the things which he suffered in the flesh.

So, are we any better or any different that they are? Although our test may differ in the details, is the test not really the same? Will we obey God, or will we not? If we truly love him we will obey. We will obey out of love - not out of fear or because of social pressure. Like Christ, we will say "not my will, but Thine be done".

Mosiah 3:19
"For the natural man is an enemy to God, and has been from the fall of Adam, and will be, forever and ever, unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit, and putteth off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ the Lord, and becometh as a child, submissive, meek, humble, patient, full of love, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon him, even as a child doth submit to his father."

Willing to submit - to adversity, to disease, to persecution - yes, even to the challenges of Same Sex Attraction. Are we willing? Do we truly love Him? Will we obey? Eternity hinges on our answer to these questions.

Best Regards,