Saturday, September 21, 2013

What is the purpose of life?

Last time we talked about where we came from and about God's plan for us. That was Act 1 of the play we are in. Now we are in Act 2. This life is Act 2. To understand what the purpose of this life is, we need to go back to the beginning of our existence on this earth. Human life began on the earth at the creation when God created Adam and Eve in His own image (Gen 1:26). God told them to tend to the garden and to "multiply and replenish the earth," (Gen 1:28) Another commandment he gave to them was to not partake of the fruit of the tree of good and evil. We know that eventually they did eat the fruit and were cast out. With this "fall" enters suffering, pain, sickness and death. Many people mistakenly see this as the worst thing in human history, and we would all be better off if it didn't happen. This isn't true. The prophet Lehi in the Book of Mormon explains why,

"22 And now, behold, if Adam had not transgressed he would not have fallen, but he would have remained in the garden of Eden. And all things which were created must have remained in the same state in which they were after they were created; and they must have remained forever, and had no end.
23 And they would have had no children; wherefore they would have remained in a state of innocence, having no joy, for they knew no misery; doing no good, for they knew no sin.
24 But behold, all things have been done in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things.
25 Adam fell that men might be; and men are, that they might have joy." (2 Nephi 2:22-25)

If Adam had not fallen, the we would never have had the opportunity to be on earth! We would not experience joy, happiness, and not doing any good. Remember that all is done "in the wisdom of him who knoweth all things." This is part of His plan for us! With the fall, we can now enter into the probationary state. It's like a test (2 Cor 8:2, 2 Nephi 2:21).
As we go through life, we have 2 great influences fighting for our attention, good and evil. God gives us the natural ability to know good and evil and to choose for ourselves which we choose. God sets commandment to help us keep doing right. But he also allows Satan to temp us to do evil. But why? Lehi answers that too. He says that there must be opposition in all things, or else how are we to learn (2 Nephi 2:11)? You may notice that many things tell us what not to do, but our nature is to do. As part of Gods test is he gave us bodies, these bodies are imperfect and carnal. The natural man is lazy, rude, and does not take control. Its runs on pleasure rather than what is right. "Because the carnal mind is the enmity against God;" (Rom 8:7). Paul teaches us about having a mind of the spirit (Rom 8:5-6). This leads to life.
God continues to test us as we sin. He allows us to be tempted and to sin. We all sin, and he wants to see what we do when we sin. Repent and come back, or turn and try to find comfort in evil. Ge tells us what the full purpose of life is (Alma 34:32). We are here to prepare to meet Him, this is where we perform our labors and to be tested. But we must repent always (Alma 34:34). We will be the same person there as we are here. And it is that person there as we are here, and it is that person who will receive final judgment. 

Our Heavenly Father does love us. We are surrounded by so much doom and gloom in this world. We sin we suffer and eventually we die and return to Him. How great will be our joy as we see the Father we have longed to know. God gives us so many good things in this life. Look at the beautiful world we live in. Think of the times you have been happy think of those you care about and those who care about you. These and countless others are things God gave to us because He loves us so much. I know that He does and I hope you do too.

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