“What Child Is This?”—from the Heart

At a prison worship service today, I heard an inmate sing “What Child Is This?” Not a performance by a trained artist but sung from the heart, if not from an even deeper place. And yes, it was on key too. An act of pure worship by one of the most serene men I know.

This inmate spent nearly 20 years “in the hole” (solitary confinement), but now he’s a man of presence and peace. He’s redeemed. An expert of the soul. And he’s about to be released prison. I cherish the performance I witnessed today.

Here’s another beautiful performance of the song, followed by lyrics.

What Child is this, who, laid to rest
On Mary’s lap, is sleeping?
Whom angels greet with anthems sweet,
While shepherds watch are keeping?
This, this is Christ the King,
Whom shepherds guard and angels sing:
Haste, haste to bring him laud,
The Babe, the Son of Mary!

Why lies He in such mean estate,
Where ox and ass are feeding?
Good Christians, fear, for sinners here
The silent Word is pleading.
Nails, spear shall pierce Him through,
The cross be borne for me, for you.
Hail, hail the Word made flesh,
The Babe, the Son of Mary.

So bring Him incense, gold, and myrrh,
Come peasant king to own Him,
The King of kings, salvation brings,
Let loving hearts enthrone Him.
Raise, raise the song on high,
The Virgin sings her lullaby:
Joy, joy, for Christ is born,
The Babe, the Son of Mary!

Conference Special: In the Last Days and The Law of Attraction and the Scriptures, Both Free on Kindle, October 6–7, 2018

Kindle CoverToday, October 6 and tomorrow, October 7, 2018, you can download for free the Kindle version of In the Last Days: A Brief Guide to Christ’s Second Coming for Latter-day Saints and of The Law of Attraction and the Scriptures, Second Edition.

In the Last Days is a basic guide for newcomers to the topic of the Second Coming of Christ, those who want to look at a wide variety of scriptural passages that also cast light on the Last Days, the Millennium, and the end of the world. Students of the Second Coming won’t find anything sensational, highly speculative, or particularly new or groundbreaking in this book, but rather a simple, scriptural foundation for the doctrine surrounding this sacred season.

The Law of Attraction and the Scriptures, Second Edition - Kindle Cover - SmallIf you’ve been wondering if the law of attraction is real, or if the ideas presented by secular teachers of this law have any relevance or foundation in the scriptures, The Law of Attraction and the Scriptures is for you. The book takes a simple approach of the law of attraction (also called the law of the harvest or the Royal Law), relying on the standard works accepted by Latter-day Saints—The Bible, Book of Mormon, Doctrine and Covenants, and Pearl of Great Price—to illuminate its meaning.

Write Your Book in 24 Hours! Free on Kindle, August 23–25, 2018

Write Your Book in 24 Hours!Write your book quickly with tips and ideas from Write Your Book in 24 Hours!, free on Kindle, August 23–25, 2018.

From the book description: “This book provides step-by-step instructions on how to write, edit, publish, and promote your book—from overcoming writer’s block to sharing your book on social media. (This book does not assert that you can create and publish a book in 24 contiguous hours, but rather in 24 elapsed hours.)”

Enjoy it free on Kindle until Saturday, August 25, 2018.

Second Coming: Iniquity Shall Abound

If you’re watching the signs of the times, here’s one that’s pretty evident:

And because iniquity shall abound, the love of many shall wax cold. (Matthew 24:12.)

There’s little more iniquity as cold hearted than what I am about to share, a signal that modern civilization is in jeopardy.

This isn’t a topic I want to talk about. It’s so perverse and sickening that I get physically and mentally messed up just thinking about it. It’s hard to imagine crimes worse than these, but in the near future, they will be spoken from the housetops, and we’ll likely be very surprised when we discover the perpetrators.

I am talking about human trafficking, especially child sex trafficking. Although illegal, human slavery is the worst it has ever been in terms of numbers of victims. It’s one of the great blights on our nation and the world.

Let facts be submitted to a candid world:

The statistics are staggering. It’s hard to think about the unbearable human suffering they represent, especially the suffering of innocents. It’s time to face it. This horrible crime is growing.

Okay, now for the hard part. I’ll do this in the form of questions. I’ll let you do your own research. The answers are very controversial which will distract from the message. You may be surprised by what you find with a few Google searches.

  • Given the profit per victim ($21,800), who can actually afford to “purchase” a sex slave?
  • Why are more and more sex crimes in the entertainment industry coming to light?
  • Why do California and Texas account for the largest arrests for trafficking in the United States? Think logically.
  • How could trafficking reach such an astounding rate? Who in the higher spheres of influence has the power to change this? Who has been turning a blind eye to it?
  • Why are the numbers of human trafficking arrests rising in the United States over the last two years?
  • What bill was signed into law in late 2017 that helps bring down human trafficking perpetrators?

There are those who would like to make this go away. Some media outlets don’t give it fair airtime because, well, you decide.

How can you help? You can get involved with or consider a monthly contribution to organizations like Operation Underground Railroad (O.U.R.) or India-based Prajwala. We can all take action, with a simple, daily prayer, or dedicating time to learning more about it, or making others aware of what is going on in our communities. It’s time to wake from the sleep of hell. We can all find ways to speak up and make a difference.

Learn more by watching The Abolitionists or Operation Toussaint. For a shorter introduction, watch Tim Ballard, founder of O.U.R. in this Talk at Google.

Rise Up, Patriot!

The-Declaration-of-Independence-The-Constitution-of-the-United-States-and-The-Bill-of-KindleWe hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. — Declaration of Independence

Every time I read the Declaration of Independence, I am amazed at how inspiring it feels to read it. To think the principal author, Thomas Jefferson, was only 33 years old at the time! I can’t help but believe that there was a Force greater than human intelligence at work on this almost sacred text. Few documents have had a greater impact on the destiny of this world than this one that was pounded out in the summer swelter of 1776.

It only takes about 10 minutes to read the Declaration of Independence. You can read it online here on the National Archives site, or you can get a copy on Kindle by clicking here ($0.99). The paperback price is set so low that I don’t get royalties for it. (If you buy the paperback, you’ll also get the Kindle version for free.) You can also watch, read, or listen for free here:

(By the way, you can also sign the Declaration of Independence yourself, here.)

I believe in the agency of man, in the independence and sovereignty of nations, in freedom of thought, freedom of speech, freedom of action. I believe America is a choice land to those who reverence the God of this land who is Jesus Christ. If we worship false gods—and there are many, many opportunities for us to do so—we cannot long enjoy the freedom and independence that we have come to take for granted.

There are many political voices in America now, hailing from the right and left. There are those who cry against “hate” with hate in their hearts. There are conspiracies and rumors of conspiracies, crimes of reason and rumors of treason, rumors of betrayal on a an unbelievable scale that is difficult to grasp or accept.

Instead of looking to the right or left, may I suggest that we look up, look up to that God who created us, that God who knows the hearts and designs of all women and men? He knows the way. He will show you the way if you ask Him and really mean it. He can deliver us from the turmoil and the confusion, but only if we look up and reach up to Him who is our Eternal God, our Deliverer, and our Savior.

So, rise up, patriot! Look to God and live. Through faith in Him we can conquer all enemies, within and without. We can even conquer our first and most notorious enemy, ourselves. When we do that with His help, no other enemy can stand before us.

A Prophet’s Example

https://www.lds.org/media-library/images/pictures-of-jesus-1128833?lang=eng

I was inspired by the example of President Russel M. Nelson’s who recently studied over 2,200 scriptures about the life of our Savior, Jesus Christ. I want to follow that example. I’m excited to begin the adventure myself today.

After he was done reading all these verses, President Nelson said:

I have devoted much of my 92 years to learning about the Savior, but rare are the occasions when I have been able to learn as much as I did over this six-week study period. (Ibid.)

If he could learn more about Christ after serving in the Quorum of the Twelve for over 30 years, can’t I too? I’m going to give it my best.

Here are links to pages from the Bible Dictionary and Topical Guide that discuss the life and teachings of Christ.

Jesus (Bible Dictionary)
Jesus Christ (Topical Guide)
Jesus Christ, Advocate
Jesus Christ, Antemortal Existence of
Jesus Christ, Appearances, Antemortal
Jesus Christ, Appearances, Postmortal
Jesus Christ, Ascension of
Jesus Christ, Atonement through
Jesus Christ, Authority of
Jesus Christ, Baptism of
Jesus Christ, Betrayal of
Jesus Christ, Birth of
Jesus Christ, Condescension of
Jesus Christ, Creator
Jesus Christ, Crucifixion of
Jesus Christ, Davidic Descent of
Jesus Christ, Death of
Jesus Christ, Divine Sonship
Jesus Christ, Exemplar
Jesus Christ, Family of
Jesus Christ, Firstborn
Jesus Christ, Foreordained
Jesus Christ, Glory of
Jesus Christ, Good Shepherd
Jesus Christ, Head of the Church
Jesus Christ, Jehovah
Jesus Christ, Judge; Jesus Christ, King;
Jesus Christ, Lamb of God
Jesus Christ, Light of the World
Jesus Christ, Lord
Jesus Christ, Mediator
Jesus Christ, Messenger of the Covenant Jesus Christ, Messiah
Jesus Christ, Millennial Reign
Jesus Christ, Mission of
Jesus Christ, Only Begotten Son Jesus Christ, Power of
Jesus Christ, Prophecies about
Jesus Christ, Redeemer
Jesus Christ, Relationships with the Father
Jesus Christ, Resurrection
Jesus Christ, Rock
Jesus Christ, Savior
Jesus Christ, Second Comforter
Jesus Christ, Second Coming
Jesus Christ, Son of Man
Jesus Christ, Spirit of
Jesus Christ, Taking the Name of
Jesus Christ, Teaching Mode of
Jesus Christ, Temptation of
Jesus Christ, Trials of
Jesus Christ, Types of, in Anticipation
Jesus Christ, Types of, in Memory

Bonus: You can view his January 2017 devotional address, where he talked about his study of these verses, here.