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Scripture Commentary — Ether 12:27-28


Ether 12:27-28 — Weaknesses can become strengths:

Verse 27

  • “If..” – the choice is ours, we have our agency.
  • “..come unto me..” – we must develop the desire and make the first steps to approach Him.
  • “..show unto them their weakness..” – perhaps we are not even aware that we have a particular weakness, it will take His love to reveal it, we will recognize the weakness.
  • “..they may be humble..” – we begin to acknowledge our dependence on Him.
  • “..my grace is sufficient..” – the Lord’s grace (divine help and strength we receive through the Atonement) becomes operative, and the power of the Atonement now begins to work in our souls.
  • “..and have faith in me..” — we must surrender our will to Him!
  • “..weak things become strong..” – true repentance begins, a change of heart ensues.  The Lord doesn’t just remove the weakness – He replaces it with strengths and abilities.

Verse 28

  • “..faith, hope, and charity bringeth unto me..” – godly traits literally carry us toward Him, and we become yoked with Him by possessing the traits He possesses.
  • “..fountain of all righteousness.”The Spirit can now be fully operative in our lives!

 

Lessons:

  • Does this mean a weakness, essentially unchanged, will somehow become a strength? Probably not.  The weakness (for example, use of sarcasm or disagreement with the law of tithing) will become a strength as we follow the process outlined above and feel the power of Christ and His atonement root out the weakness and replace it more Christ-like actions and with a testimony of His power and love.  The weakness in one area is rooted out and strength is built in the soul.
  • An example of this principle is found in the life of Sariah.  In 1 Nephi 5:2 she accuses Lehi of being ‘a visionary man’ and of causing the death of their sons.  Then in verse 8 she can state that she knows Lehi is being commanded of the Lord, and that the Lord protected their sons.  Then in 1 Nephi 17:1-2 we read how the Lord blessed the women of Lehi’s group, with strength, with determination, with success in physical and spiritual concerns.

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