During this week I was reading the final chapters of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. My thoughts turned toward the verses found in Matthew 28: 11-15. These verses come after Jesus’ resurrection and crucifixion, and after the angels were at the tomb to tell Mary and Mary Magdalene that Jesus had risen. They then say to tell the disciples, and along the way, Jesus tells them to have them meet in Galilee where they will see Him. Then these verses come after:
11 Now when they were going, behold, some of the watch (guard) came into the city, and shewed (reported) unto the chief priests all the things that were done.
12 And when they were assembled with the elders, and had taken counsel, they gave large (much) money unto the soldiers,
13 Saying, Say ye, His disciples came by night, and stole him away while we slept.
14 And if this come to the governor’s ears, we will persuade him, and secure you.
15 So they took the money, and did as they were taught: and this saying is commonly reported among the Jews until this day.
These verses were interesting because it points out the fact that some were payed to essentially preach that the Savior did not rise from the dead, but rather that his body was removed by the disciples. In short, they were persuaded to not share the gospel, or even to share false testimony against the Gospel.
I feel that this does happen in our day, still. Although we have many testimonies of the Savior, and his Gospel, we face a constant battle of those who have negative feelings toward the church. Whether they be from a negative experience, or simply a dwindling testimony that lead to inactivity and eventually hostility, they tend to share their negative experiences with many–especially through mass communication of social media and other outlets.
I talked with a friend who brought up the idea “do a google search from the eyes of an investigator about the church, and there will be many voices that will confuse and misguide.” As a missionary, we sometimes found people who told us that they had felt something during our lessons, but then were afraid because of the things that their family had said about The Church, and whether true or not, they did not want to upset anyone. They faced the opposition that always comes when good is growing.
Second, we know that where there is good growing, the power of the adversary will inevitably be growing as well. We have seen that even though the church is growing, the world is veering more and more down the path contrary to the Gospel. Since the world will continue this path, as promised in the scriptures, we should be giving and adding to the side of Good. Often, we don’t share the Gospel—out of laziness and worldly distractions. (we should do a hashtag here… like #sinOfOmission)
The conclusion that we came to was that we, as members, need to “flood the earth” (or our lives) with the Good News of the Gospel, which will make an impact on others. As a result, lessen the fact and weight that so much negativity can be found, even on Google. And there is so much good in the gospel! Think of the countless blessings and the joy of a happy family, and a peaceful conscience!
We have so many methods available to us with the continually growing technologies. Instead of just “liking” or “commenting” on a religious or uplifting post about the Church, we should “share” it! Silly enough, such a simple act will help, because enough shares will improve the SEO (search engine optimization – in essence, how easily a link can be found) of a post. What if we were to get into the habit of sharing all those good things on our pages? Would that not allow the uplifting of the Gospel to strengthen those facing the more of the difficult things in life?
If I were ever offered money to testify against the truth, I hope I would never take it. So, to conclude this week’s Bible Talk, I share my testimony with you:
I know that God loves us. Because He loves us, He sent His son, Jesus Christ, to give us the example, and the way. He is our Savior who paid for our sins so that we can repent and become clean, and hope to enter his presence. Without him, we surely are without hope.
I know that Jesus Christ lives. He also loves us. For this, He suffered.
I also know that the Gospel that he shared and taught does bring joy to those who live it, and have desires to follow Him. I know that the struggles in this life are often hard and sometimes seem hopeless—but I also know that the greatest being who ever walked this earth has overcome even death to become your source of strength, and your source of hope. I promise that he wants us all in His presence after this life, and that he has provided those means. All that he asks of us is to keep the commandments, and to follow him. I hope that we can do so–because it will bless us greatly.
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